After users started misusing it to impersonate major companies and known personalities, Twitter appears to have suspended its $7.99/month Blue membership service, which allowed customers to pay for a verification check mark.

This week, Twitter introduced a feature that lets users purchase a checkmark that had previously been used to denote a verified or official account in its iPhone app. Friday saw the removal of the Twitter Blue sign-up option from the iPhone app.

The swift suspension of the service shows that, at least right now, CEO Elon Musk’s grand strategy to attract new user-based revenue isn’t succeeding as anticipated.


According to NBC, due to the expensive subscription service, many pranksters started setting up fake Twitter accounts. It made the site even more conducive to false information, and numerous easily obtained checkmarks were used to discredit corporations, governments, and celebrities.

According to a current Twitter sales employee, the company decided to reduce Twitter Blue verification due to the influx of impersonators.

The employee, who wanted to remain anonymous because they were not allowed to speak on behalf of Twitter, said that a fake Eli Lilly account that tweeted that “we are excited to announce insulin is free now” caused a major issue.

Before it was deleted, the tweet remained visible for several hours. Later, the genuine Eli Lilly account tweeted, “We regret to individuals who have received a false message from a bogus Lilly account.

Following the fraudulent message’s publication, the stock price of Eli Lilly and other pharmaceutical firms, notably AbbVie, which was also the target of a Twitter impersonation, both fell precipitously. Major stock indices were then rising during a market surge.

Another imposter mocked Elon Musk’s electric car company Tesla by mimicking the blue subscription checkmark for paid subscribers. In a barrage of insulting tweets, a user whose name looked to be “@TeslaReal” claimed, “honestly the 53 per cent reduction in stock price doesn’t phase[sic] us. We are the ones who are most knowledgeable about Crashing.

For marketers, the impact of so many changes to the Twitter platform is a significant challenge; several have already suspended their expenditure there.

Some users who had already paid for the programme also reported that their freshly acquired blue checkmarks had vanished from their accounts.

No one from Twitter was immediately available for comment. Musk was unavailable for comment right away.

The removal of Twitter Blue verified comes as Musk and Alex Spiro, who is currently serving as Twitter’s top lawyer, are attempting to reassure staff, clients, and regulators that they will abide by all legal requirements and the terms of an earlier FTC consent decree.

“I cannot emphasize enough that Twitter will do whatever it takes to adhere to both the letter and spirit of the FTC consent decree,” Elon Musk wrote in a company-wide email that CNBC was able to get on Thursday night.

In a subsequent email, Spiro stated that his team had communicated with FTC officials on Thursday and that Twitter would soon be subject to the agency’s “initial forthcoming compliance check.” He made it clear that any violations would be the responsibility of Twitter, not “those who work at Twitter.”