Oprah, Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian victims of Elon Musk's Twitter blue tick purge

Credit: Original article can be found here

A purge of Twitter’s long-standing blue tick verification process has begun, with A-listers Beyoncé, Kim Kardashian and even Donald Trump losing their blue tick.

Where the recognisable blue tick was once a way to verify one’s identity, it now officially means a person is paying for the privilege with Elon Musk’s Twitter Blue.

When the blue tick via paid subscription model first launched in 2022, it was not without its problems – the platform saw multiple imposter or parody accounts filling the platform.

After multiple parody accounts were set up under the name “Elon Musk”, the new owner of the company tweeted, “Going forward, any Twitter handles engaging in impersonation without clearly specifying ‘parody’ will be permanently suspended”.

* Back with the banned: Do Twitter’s exiles return under Musk?
* Toxic Twitter: Here’s how Elon Musk can fix his new toy
* Why is Elon Musk set to buy Twitter? What would he do with it?

Despite additional security steps taken, the removal of verification ticks of celebrities, and a blue tick available for US$8 a month is expecting to cause confusion on the platform, reported Variety.

Musk – who has already come under fire for ruining New Zealand’s Twitter Christmas with the loss of the country’s annual Secret Santa – announced on April 20 that thousands of Legacy verified accounts would be unchecked – if they were not subscribed to Twitter Blue.

On Friday, football legend Christiano Ronaldo, pop superstar Katy Perry, Samuel L Jackson, Robert Downey Jr and Ben Stiller were no longer blue tick verified.

Comedian Ricky Gervais, who recently came after New Zealand’s cat-killing competition, poked fun at the cull on Friday, tweeting, “My blue tick has gone. I’m not sure if I’m really me or not”.

A-listers have lost their blue verfication ticks on Twitter in mass cull.

Getty Images

A-listers have lost their blue verfication ticks on Twitter in mass cull.

Kiwi celebrities without a blue tick on Friday include comedian Melanie Bracewell who use her final blue tick opportunity to promote upcoming shows.

“Only a little while left of my blue tick to let you know I’m on 7 days tonight and my NZ tour is in 3 weeks and is selling fast,” she tweeted on Thursday.

Jemaine Clement had a less wordy response to the cull, and tweeted “pfffffft” against the notification he would lose his verification tick.

Kiwi director Taika Waititi and pop superstar Lorde were also missing the familiar blue check mark on Friday.

But while the mass cull has purged the platform of instantly recognisable celebrity accounts, some remained on Friday – including Russell Crowe, Thor actor Chris Hemsworth, Taylor Swift and Britney Spears.

The account information against blue ticks had changed to read: “This account is verified because they are subscribed to Twitter Blue and verified their phone number”.

Some verified accounts remain, but account information says the user has paid to subscribe to Twitter Blue.


Some verified accounts remain, but account information says the user has paid to subscribe to Twitter Blue.

While those remaining blue ticks may be lining Musk’s pockets, it appears a glitch in the system could mean some have remained mistakenly.

Author Stephen King, who kept his tick tweeted a response to his followers on Friday.

“My Twitter account says I’ve subscribed to Twitter Blue. I haven’t. My Twitter account says I’ve given a phone number. I haven’t,” the best-selling author tweeted on Friday morning.

It is a statement that has many Twitter users wondering whether the author’s blue tick remained as a purposeful revenge move by Musk.

“Elon hasn’t done a whole lot right since taking over this site but making celebs who said they’d never pay for twitter (Stephen King, LeBron James, William Shatner) keep their blue checks is kind of funny,” on user tweeted.