Elon Musk has announced that Twitter would ban accounts impersonating other members if they don’t specify parody in the bio. The decision was announced earlier today after several verified Twitter accounts were found impersonating Musk and even US President Joe Biden. However, this move will have a broader impact on the platform as the ban applies to “any Twitter” handle and not just verified users. Over the weekend, Twitter banned a couple of verified accounts, like Kathy Griffins (2 million followers) and India-Australian professor Ian Woolford for mimicking Musk on the platform. Twitter’s new owner has also announced some more measures to curb misinformation on the platform.
In a tweet, Musk said Twitter would now directly suspend accounts and not issue a warning if found impersonating others. Since the blue tick mark bundled with the Twitter Blue subscription will be available to more users, the chances of misinformation are higher from verified accounts. Musk says “any name change at all will cause temporary loss of verified checkmark”. This was after verified accounts like Kathy Griffins and Ian Woolford changed their names to Elon Musk.
The decision to ban accounts for impersonating others comes when many advertisers are pausing funds for ads on Twitter, and the US midterm polls are around the corner. Advertisers fear that misformation may increase on Twitter due to Musk’s decision to lay off 50 per cent of employees last week, and their ads might be placed next to a problematic article or tweet. The fear is more palpable in countries like the US, which will organise midterm elections this week.
Musk had announced that Twitter blue badge or verification mark would be available to more users if they subscribe to Twitter Blue. Twitter Blue plan will arrive in India by next month, Musk announced. Apart from promising a Twitter-verified mark at just $8, the subscription also bundles additional features like edit and undo tweets.