Twitter’s revamped Blue subscription, which gives subscribers a blue checkmark and little else for $9.99 a month, has mysteriously disappeared just over a day after its launch.
After a false start over the weekend, Twitter on Wednesday rolled out a revamped Blue service for iPhone users in select countries, including Canada. However, now when users tap the “Twitter Blue” option in the Twitter app menu, they get an error saying it’s not available:
“Thank you for your interest! Twitter Blue will be available in your country in the future. Please check back later.”
The Verge reported that several users no longer even see the Blue option in the menu, while those who still see it cannot log in. I checked Twitter on my iPhone and even though I still had the blue menu option, I got an error saying it wasn’t available. There is also tons of tweets from users with similar problems.
It is currently unclear why Twitter Blue is no longer available. It’s possible that Twitter has intentionally suspended the service due to the flood of fake impostor accounts, or it could be related to the company’s decision to limit Blue registration to new accounts (although that doesn’t explain why accounts that have been around for a while, like mine, don’t have access to Blue ).
Update 11/11/2022 at 10:37 AM ET: More information on Twitter Blue events is available at Platform jumping editor-in-chief Zoë Schiffer. Inside something tweet thread, Schiffer cited details from an internal Twitter note and an announcement sent to Slack. The company has reportedly suspended the launch of Blue and is trying to prevent people from subscribing to “help address impersonation issues.” This includes blocking the purchase of Blue on iOS, although existing subscribers can still access Blue features. In addition, Schiffer said Twitter re-added the gray “Official” checkmark, but only for advertisers (The Verge, however, reported that some news organizations also received a check mark).
NEW: Twitter has suspended the launch of Twitter Blue and is actively trying to prevent people from subscribing “to help resolve impersonation issues,” according to an internal note. 1/
— Zoë Schiffer (@ZoeSchiffer) November 11, 2022
The Verge suggests that this could all be related to Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk, laying off half of the company’s employees earlier this week. Multiple reports, including from current employees, warned that Twitter was in danger of falling apart as problems, errors and bugs piled up. The company’s remaining staff are also pushed to the limit, with many working long hours and even sleeping in the office. In addition, Musk recently sent an email to his employees demanding a return to office work while warning that Twitter was going bankrupt.
The Twitter Blue release itself was stormy. Aside from the false start, it was launched after Twitter added a new gray “Official” badge to some verified accounts. Within hours, Musk killed the gray token, tweeting that the blue token would be “great equalizer [sic].” Following Blue’s release, Twitter was flooded with fake accounts using the paid blue badge to appear more legitimate, which many predicted would happen. Musk should also have seen it coming, as he was shocked by all the accounts presented about him, but instead Musk seems convinced that the paid blue badge is indeed fix these problems.
And now the gray “Official” sign is making a comeback at least According to Twitter’s support page. Humorously, the two latest tweets from Twitter support directly contradict each other. A November 9 tweet said the company would not add an “official” tag, and a November 11 tweet said it had now added the tag. Neat.
Follow the latest on Musk’s Twitter frenzy here.
Update 11/11/2022 at 10:37 AM ET: Added more information about the Twitter Blue change reported Platform jumping editor-in-chief Zoë Schiffer.
Source: The Verge
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