Elon Musk is at it again... and this time with a firm deadline.
The Twitter CEO who acquired the company in October 2022 for $44 billion is once again rolling out his business plan to try to recoup his losses by mining the coveted blue checkmark status symbol for cash.
If you recall, Musk tried and failed when he launched a subscription service for the verified marking in the fall. He quickly rescinded his brilliant idea when parody accounts were created, spreading false information and in some cases, even causing stock prices to plummet.
Musk relaunched the service which costs $8/month for web users and $11/month for iPad and iPhone users, but many previously verified individuals still haven't jumped on board.
And they may never, despite Musk's final warnings.
William Shatner, for one, isn't having it. He called out Musk on the platform, asking why he should suddenly pay for something that he's had for free for the last 15 years.
The original purpose of verification—to verify the identities of official accounts for businesses and individuals with large followings such as celebrities to avoid fraud and phishing scams—continues to elude Musk. The self-appointed Twitter boss still views the blue check as the sought after status symbol it became instead of a means of protecting users.
Musk quote tweeted without tagging Shatner:
"It's more about treating everyone equally."
Musk also replied to a complaint with:
"It will be glorious."
On Sunday, Monica Lewinsky posted a screenshot to Twitter of all the fake accounts displaying her moniker, including accounts with a paid for "verified" status.
She then added:
"In what universe is this fair to people who can suffer consequences for being impersonated?"
"A lie travels half way around the world before truth even gets out the door."
Musk scrapped his first blue check money grab after multiple verified accounts bore his name.
The move by Musk harkened the adage "one sign of privilege is deciding something isn't a problem until it's a problem for you."
Lewinsky then shared her Instagram handle with her Twitter followers.
Many users agreed with Lewinsky.
The blue check was intended to prevent the spread of misinformation and fraud.
But Musk's plan allows any account to obtain the symbol and spout garbage.
Appropriately, the new verification service is set to launch on April 1.
The Twitterverse will have to wait and see how many (legit) blue checks are still around come April Fool's Day.
Here's hoping this is all a big, bad joke.