Twitter has decided to rethink on its “verified accounts” feature after criticisms emerged over the type of content being posted by these accounts.
Twitter started giving a “verified blue badge” to accounts of public interest after verifying its identity, which was later extended to individuals. Though Twitter claims it doesn’t endorse any of its users’ accounts, the blue badge was widely seen as a sign of endorsement.
In a series of tweets from its support handle on Thursday, Twitter announced that it will be reviewing the existing verified handles and soon introduce a new authentication and verification programme.
“Verification was meant to authenticate identity & voice but it is interpreted as an endorsement or an indicator of importance. We recognize that we have created this confusion and need to resolve it,” Twitter had tweeted last week.
It was followed-up with a series of tweets on Thursday.
“Verification has long been perceived as an endorsement. We gave verified accounts visual prominence on the service which deepened this perception. We should have addressed this earlier but did not prioritize the work as we should have.
“This perception became worse when we opened up verification for public submissions and verified people who we in no way endorse.
“We’re working on a new authentication and verification program. In the meantime, we are not accepting any public submissions for verification and have introduced new guidelines for the program.
“We are conducting an initial review of verified accounts and will remove verification from accounts whose behaviour does not fall within these new guidelines. We will continue to review and take action as we work towards a new program we are proud of.”
The company also updated its guidelines on verified accounts. As per the new guidelines Twitter will revoke the verified status if the account was found intentionally misleading people, promoted hate and/or violence, incited or engaged in harassment of others, or displayed violence and dangerous behaviour among others.