Twitter is now inviting any and all users to upgrade their accounts to verified status, a designation that until today was exclusively used to identify key individuals (celebrities, public figures and so on) and organizations on the microblogging platform as authentic.

Verified accounts are designated by a blue badge icon with a white checkmark inside. Note to virtually everyone – it’s not a blue checkmark. Just sayin’.

Of course, just because it’s opening up the invitation process doesn’t mean you’ll automatically be verified. Twitter notes that it approves account types maintained by users in music, acting, fashion, government, politics, religion, journalism, media, sports, business and other key interest areas. In other words, your account needs to be of public interest to gain verification.

If you still believe you should be verified, note that your account must have all of the following:

  • A verified phone number
  • A confirmed e-mail address
  • A bio
  • A profile photo
  • A header photo
  • A birthday (for accounts that are not company, brand or organization accounts)
  • A website
  • Tweets set as public in Tweet privacy settings

In a press release, Tina Bhatnagar, Twitter's vice president of User Services, said they want to make it even easier for people to find creators and influencers on Twitter so it makes sense for them to let people apply for verification.

By verifying more accounts, Twitter is simultaneously tackling the issue of online harassment. After all, if your personal information is linked to Twitter, you’ll be far less likely to harass or bully someone publicly.

Those interested in learning more or who want to apply for verified status can do so by visiting the Twitter Help Center.

Image courtesy Bloomua, Shutterstock