Twitter’s new owner and CEO, Elon Musk, appears to confirm reports that the platform is considering charging people a $20 fee to keep the coveted blue check mark on their account in an exchange with horror author Stephen King.

The king criticized the idea of ​​demanding payment, Twitter To his 7 million followers on Monday: “They should pay me. I’d go like Enron,” he said, referring to the energy company that has collapsed in scandal and filed for bankruptcy.

In response, Musk suggested that charging a verification fee would help the site turn a profit and appear to be negotiating with King, Twitter: “We need to pay the bills somehow! Twitter can’t be completely dependent on advertisers. How about $8?”

I will explain the rationale in a longer form before implementing this. It is the only way to defeat bots and trolls.” The king did not reply.

Twitter wants to charge you for verification. Here’s what you need to know.

Billionaire owner Tesla and SpaceX completed his $44 billion purchase of Twitter last week after several months of negotiations and legal wrangling.

In the lead-up to his Twitter takeover, Musk made the case of fake Twitter accounts operated by “bots” a major point of contention as he demanded more internal data from the company to assess the number of fake users on the site.

since then He said That “the entire verification process is being renewed” without sharing more details, though he has yet to confirm whether or not any payment will be requested for verification.

A blue verification badge indicates that the account is ‘Authentic, Premium and Active’ according to On Twitter, it is generally maintained by public figures in government, news and entertainment, among other limited areas.

Musk’s inner circle worked over the weekend to shore up his layoff plans on Twitter

Tech investor and longtime Musk partner Jason Calacanis, who has appeared since the Musk acquisition in the Twitter company directory, also asked for interest in various blue check payments on Monday, polling prices ranging from $5 to $15 a month. While the survey is still open, 82% of respondents have so far indicated that they will not pay. “Interesting,” Musk responded to the Calacanes poll.

Echoing the logic of Musk, Kalkanis chirp That “having so many verified people on Twitter, while removing bot armies, is the quickest way to make the platform more secure and usable for everyone.”

The takeover of Twitter — which is like a public online arena for debate and debate across the political spectrum — may be prompting Musk to show signs of acknowledging the demands and responsibilities of owning the social platform. Late Monday, Musk changed his Twitter bio from “Chief Twit” to “Twitter Complaint Hotline Operator.”

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Musk has officially taken over as Twitter’s CEO after several old Twitter executives, including former CEO Parag Agrawal, were fired after his purchase of the San Francisco-based company.

Over the weekend, The Washington Post reported that members of Musk’s inner circle, along with the remaining senior Twitter executives, had detailed discussions about the site’s approach to content management and spam as well as plans for a first round of layoffs for about 25 percent of the force. working. .

Monday’s financial filing also showed that Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey has transferred his Twitter shares to the company, making him a Musk investor.

Racist tweets quickly surfaced after Musk closed a deal on Twitter

Since taking over the platform, Musk has also said he has plans to form a “content editing board” of experts with “broadly diverse views.” He added that no major decisions on content or recalculation will be made before this board convenes.

It comes amid speculation about whether Musk will bring former President Donald Trump, a prolific tweeter, back to the site. Trump was banned after the January 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol, with Twitter citing “the risk of further incitement to violence.” The reprimand also resulted in Trump’s tweets mostly disappearing from the site, removing his list of ideas.

“If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me if Trump would come back on this platform, Twitter would make money!” musk chirp this week.

Meanwhile, Trump told Fox News last week that he prefers his own platform, the Truth Social, to his public messaging.

“I don’t think Twitter can be successful without me,” Trump said. “I’m staying with the truth. I like it better, I like the way it works, I like Elon, but I’m staying with the truth,” he added.

Elizabeth Duskin and Fayez Siddiqui contributed to this report.

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