EU institutions snub Twitter’s paid blue-check verification plan 

EU institutions snub Twitter’s paid blue-check verification plan 
Опубликовано: Thursday, 06 April 2023 09:53

It’s a reverse of previous policy to vouch for accounts’ authenticity.


Twitter is this month unrolling its new paid-verification plan, but the European Union institutions are staying away from the controversial blue checks.

The European Commission and European Parliament are not currently planning to pay Twitter to get their hundreds of official EU accounts — including those of Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Parliament President Roberta Metsola — verified under the “Twitter Blue” program, according to the institutions’ press services.

Reversing a previous policy that aimed to limit misinformation, Twitter said it will this month remove legacy blue checks that used to certify the authenticity of government officials, journalists and public figures’ accounts unless they pay. Meanwhile, any users could also soon be able to subscribe to get the once-coveted blue tick.

Announced in November 2022 after Elon Musk bought the platform, the plan has sparked fears that it could result in a wave of fake accounts and an uptick in fake messages. Irish privacy chief Helen Dixon in March also warned that the paid-verification program could potentially go against the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Both the Commission and the Parliament said they were “constantly monitoring for possible misuse or impersonations” of their institutions’ accounts on social networks. A Commission spokesperson added that particular attention was spent on “several high-value Commission accounts (notably Commissioners)” and that they would report potential impersonations to the platforms.

After sending in February a list of more than 350 accounts of eligible EU institutions officials and organizations, Twitter has given most of the 175 official Commission accounts a gray checkmark, a Commission spokesperson said.

Most of the 60 Parliament press services’ accounts were also granted the gray tick, meant for government accounts. In the U.S., the White House has previously said it would not opt for the new blue-check program.

While some government accounts with legacy blue checks have been turned into gray checks, Twitter has yet to fully implement its seemingly chaotic new policy. The check for the New York Times was removed shortly after Twitter’s CEO Musk insulted the news organization for refusing to pay for the verification program.

Asked for comment, Twitter’s press email address responded with a poop emoji.

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