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Twitter temporarily stops verifying accounts after criticism

By Greg S ยท 4 replies
Nov 9, 2017
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  1. Verified Twitter accounts have never been officially endorsed or given special promotions but criticism from many Twitter users shows that popular opinion can sometimes outweigh the truth. Following intense backlash regarding the verification of white supremacist users and users with extreme political views, verification of accounts has temporarily been suspended until further notice.

    Despite the fact that Twitter very clearly states verified accounts are not endorsed, having a check mark next to a name does connote some form of legitimacy. Twitter does seem to have mixed views on the matter itself considering that some controversial public figures have been denied verification and others have had verification revoked as a punishment.

    If being verified is not meant to enhance a user's legitimacy and help expand their audience, it seems strange that verification is not given to all well-known people regardless of how controversial they may be. Twitter's official stance is that verification is meant to prevent impersonation of users in government, fashion, music, politics, religion, acting, sports, media or other areas of interest.

    Although verified users are not meant to be given promotion or extra attention from Twitter, public opinion clearly does not see it that way. Adding a badge to a profile does differentiate a user and can be viewed as giving more credibility to an account simply because it has gone through a review process. While the content of verified accounts is not guaranteed to be better or any more accurate than standard accounts, a simple icon can greatly skew how content is received.

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  2. Adding a badge to a profile does differentiate a user and can be viewed as giving more credibility to an account simply because it has gone through a review process. While the content of verified accounts is not guaranteed to be better or any more accurate than standard accounts, a simple icon can greatly skew how content is received.

    The very people complaining about this are the same who first cried about fake news. Twitter goes ahead and makes it so we can easily sort "authentic" accounts from parody and/or fake accounts, and that gets decried because a "verified" badthinkers are apparently worse than randos. Because God forbid we actually know what the real Richard Spencer thinks versus not-Richard Spencer.

    It's also telling of the leftist credentialist mindset, which is more important: What you say, the beliefs you actually hold, aren't as important as a credentials (a blue check mark in this case) that appear next to your name. That's what gives them validity, not the ideas or arguments themselves.
     
    Hexic likes this.
  3. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 3,956   +2,269

    Personally, I do not see this as an issue of left vs right as each side claims to hold first amendment rights dear to their hearts.

    To me, this sounds more like an inconsistency in tweeter's verification process in the first place. Either you verify everyone, and once verified, you do not revoke the verification, or you verify no one. If inconsistency is the norm in applying a policy, then the policy is of no use in the first place.

    Personally, I do not use tweeter. However, if I did, I would much rather prefer that if I were following someone significant, I could trust the platform to have verified the identity of that person. Otherwise, tweeter would be totally useless since you could never be sure that said person of importance actually was responsible for the content of the account. Without the verification, any account could be as invalid as someone who has parked a domain name in the name of someone of significance.

    Unfortunately, I think this gets to an issue where some people will and do take advantage of a situation like this for their own gain or various other reasons; in other words, those who would do so lack integrity. And as I see it, lack of integrity is a big problem these days.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2017
  4. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 4,474   +3,028

    From my observation, it is more of a rule, not a "sometimes" event. Sometimes, the truth doesn't get swallowed under the pressure of the crowd.
     
  5. Camikazi

    Camikazi TS Evangelist Posts: 978   +324

    All verification was meant to do is prove that the person tweeting is actually the person they say they are, that is all and it should be continued to make sure fake accounts aren't thought to be real ones.
     

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