The social media company’s new owner took to Twitter on Tuesday to confirm the change he was making and to explain how it would work.
“Twitter’s current lords & peasants system for who has or doesn’t have a blue checkmark is bulls***. Power to the people! Blue for $8/month,” he stated.
The billionaire, who now describes himself on his personal account as “Twitter Complaint Hotline Operator”, also said that the charge would be “price-adjusted by country proportionate to purchasing power parity”.
And he laid out the other benefits he claims verified users will receive: “You will also get: priority in replies, mentions & search, which is essential to defeat spam/scam; Ability to post long video & audio – half as many ads.”
He said it could also lead to a “paywall bypass for publishers willing to work with us”.
“This will also give Twitter a revenue stream to reward content creators,” he added.
Twitter’s current lords & peasants system for who has or doesn’t have a blue checkmark is bullshit.
Power to the people! Blue for $8/month.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 1, 2022
Mr Musk had earlier hinted at the $8 price point in a Twitter argument with horror writer Stephen King who tweeted that he would leave the platform over a rumoured $20 monthly charge for verification.
“F*** that, they should pay me,” tweeted Mr King, which caught the attention of the world’s richest person.
Mr Musk then tried to haggle about the price with the famed horror author, suggesting a lower price, $8, for the feature.
“We need to pay the bills somehow! Twitter cannot rely entirely on advertisers,” tweeted Mr Musk.
When one Twitter user suggested that Mr King was wealthy enough to afford it, he replied: “It ain’t the money, it’s the principal [sic] of the thing.”
Mr Musk took full control of the company last week after closing a $44bn deal for it.
Within hours of taking control of Twitter last week, Mr Musk fired CEO Parag Agrawal, chief financial officer Ned Segal, and Vijaya Gadde, head of legal policy, trust, and safety, and general counsel Sean Edgett.