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Journalists express concerns as verified blue checks return on Elon Musk’s X platform



twitter blue elon musk

Several prominent journalists and others expressed surprise, and in many cases, dissatisfaction, as they unexpectedly regained their verified blue checks on Elon Musk’s X platform last night.

Among them, Peter Kafka shared a message from X confirming that the upgrade was intentional.

The message stated, “As an influential member of the community on X, we’ve given you a complimentary subscription to X Premium subject to X Premium Terms by selecting this notice.”

A subsequent tweet from X explained: Accounts with over 2,500 verified (paid Premium or Premium+ blue tick subscribers) receive Premium features for free, while those with over 5,000 subscribers get the ad-free Premium+ tier at no cost.


Previously, only users with large follower counts, along with celebrities and corporations/media companies, received free Premium blue checks.

This recent change seems to aim at bringing influential users with lower follower counts, particularly journalists, into the fold.

So, what drove this decision? X may have recognized the need for more journalists with blue checks. Recent events, such as the Taiwan earthquake, Turkey elections, and Baltimore bridge collapse, have led some users to criticize X for no longer being the go-to breaking news platform that Twitter once was.

This shift may be attributed to X’s algorithms prioritizing blue check content and replies, resulting in reduced prominence for journalists who discover or amplify such news. Instead, less credible sources, such as those promoting obscure coins with minimal followers, now dominate replies.

However, despite the reinstatement of verified blue checks, many users aren’t pleased with the development. For some, the blue check has become a symbol of shame. “@emptywheel” lamented, “Shit, I’ve been forcibly bluechecked. How do I opt out,” while Katie Notopoulos tweeted, “oh no, I am become bluecheck, promoter of shibacoin.”



Lawrence is a dynamic digital journalist known for his expertise in creating SEO-focused content that drives business success. Alongside his journalism career, he also serves as an AI tutor, leveraging his knowledge to educate and empower others in the field. Lawrence graduated from Moshood Abiola Polytechnic with an HND in Mass Communication and has had his work referenced in Wikipedia and various online media outlets.