X, formerly known as Twitter, has introduced an intriguing new feature for its paying users, granting them the ability to conceal the iconic blue checkmark that adorns their profile — yes, the very symbol they pay to proudly showcase.
A recent update to the X Blue help centre page, which caters to subscribers of the $8 monthly membership known as Twitter Blue, has unveiled this fresh option among its array of subscriber perks. This exclusive membership encompasses a host of enticing features, with the revered blue verification badge being one of its prized offerings.
The newfound capability to hide the checkmark marks a novel inclusion to this lineup. As articulated on the page, “As a valued subscriber, you have the discretion to cloak your checkmark on your account. This discreet shift will shroud the checkmark on both your profile and your posts. It’s important to note, however, that in certain contexts, the checkmark may persist, and specific features could potentially unveil your active subscription status.”
In addition, the page judiciously advises that the act of concealing the checkmark might entail foregoing some other cherished benefits of the Blue membership. Rest assured, X pledges an ongoing commitment to refining this innovative functionality for the optimal user experience.
NEWS: The ability to hide your Blue checkmark is now live and working on Android with the latest update! pic.twitter.com/bIBzWDvLHv
— X News Daily (@xDaily) August 2, 2023
Why Opt for Blue and Then Tuck Away Your Checkmark?
Though X and its enigmatic CEO Elon Musk have refrained from explicitly elucidating the rationale behind this new option, speculation abounds within the user community. Some conjecture that this move could be a response to the recent notoriety garnered by blue checkmarks. This shift in reputation emerged following Musk’s decision to transition these once-venerated badges from indicators of verification to emblems of Blue membership. In the era prior to Musk’s stewardship of X/Twitter, the blue checkmark was an emblem reserved for public figures and institutions that had demonstrated their authenticity and prominence through rigorous identity verification. However, in a bold move, Musk deemed this system “corrupt” and initiated a transition. This culminated in the revocation of legacy blue checks and the rebranding of the checkmark as a purchasable privilege open to any individual willing to invest in the X Blue service. Although Musk did eventually reinstate legacy blue checks for a select few prominent accounts, including luminaries like Beyonce and Kim Kardashian, the symbolic verification of an account has shifted. Now, it signifies a subscription to X Blue.
A Canvas of Controversy Surrounding X Blue
In the aftermath of this transformation, a sea of blue checkmark accounts has metamorphosed into fodder for internet memes, humour, and critique. Furthermore, X has faced allegations of providing a platform for misinformation and hate by bestowing a distinctive boost to posts made by Blue members. This favouritism is reflected through enhanced rankings in conversations and search results, an advantage that some actors have exploited to disseminate harmful concepts.
Adding to the intrigue, both Musk and X have recently unveiled plans for blue check accounts to monetize their activities within the app, further intensifying the existing controversy.
The Verdict on the Valued Checkmark
While Musk once celebrated the blue checkmark as a pivotal incentive for premium account holders, this new development prompts a broader consideration. The evolving landscape suggests that not everyone shares the same sentiment regarding this emblematic feature. As X continues to navigate this nuanced terrain, users are left to ponder the fascinating evolution of the blue checkmark’s significance within the context of a rapidly changing digital landscape.