The Twitter D-Day for removing verification blue checks came and went without any noticeable blue check removal, with only the New York Times getting their check removed, and now Elon Musk has replaced the blue bird logo with a crypto meme.
Saturday was April 1, so it was difficult taking anything seriously on Twitter, as any post might have been an April Fool’s prank. But we went to bed on the night of March 31 thinking that the vast majority of verified, blue-checked Twitter accounts were going to lose their blue checks come Saturday morning unless they paid the $8-per-month subscription. (And in some cases, $1,000 a month for large organizations to be verified). And as that April 1 deadline for paying up or losing your check approached, many celebrities insisted they would never pay the fee, the White House said their account would not pay for a check, and many of the nation’s largest news outlets like CNN, the New York Times, and the Washington Post also said they wouldn’t pay.
Welp guess my blue ✔️ will be gone soon cause if you know me I ain’t paying the 5. 🤷🏾♂️— LeBron James (@KingJames) March 31, 2023
Well, April 1 rolled around, and seemingly no one lost the blue check. Instead, people woke to entirely different blue check drama; those with verified accounts instead saw a bizarre message that their still-existent blue check indicated they may have paid, or maybe they didn’t.
LOL. This is his solution. Nobody knows what the blue check means now! pic.twitter.com/JsOS0nSpDj— Schooley (@Rschooley) April 2, 2023
The message that displayed on several verified accounts said “This account is verified because it’s subscribed to Twitter Blue or is a legacy verified account.” In other words, they conflated the two, and there’s effectively no way of telling them apart.
Starting on Saturday, many Twitter accounts will lose their blue check mark under modifications being made by Elon Musk, the social media company’s owner. The move has implications for a range of users on the platform. Here’s what to know. https://t.co/Sw9TOye64w— The New York Times (@nytimes) March 31, 2023
But now let’s get meta. Above we see the New York Times’ tweet about the prospect of blue checks disappearing, and you’ll notice that the New York Times no longer has a blue check. From what we can tell across the media landscape, the New York Times appears to be the only publication which had its blue check removed. This is likely related to one Twitter user pointing out the Times still had its check, and Twitter owner Elon Musk replied, “Oh ok, we’ll take it off then.” Musk further dragged the Times saying “their propaganda isn’t even interesting” and “their feed is the Twitter equivalent of diarrhea.”
Why is there a shiba inu button that doesn't do anything on Twitter desktop? pic.twitter.com/EuVIVL3MqH— Dan Edwards #TeamLuxx (@prod_danedwards) April 3, 2023
And oddly, on Monday, KRON4 reported that Twitter had replaced their traditional bird logo with the image of a Shiba Inu dog. That dog face is a reference to the cryptocurrency dogecoin, and as CNBC reports that comes on the heels of a legal development where “On Friday, attorneys for Twitter and Musk asked a federal judge to toss out a $258 billion lawsuit from 2022 that accused the billionaire of manipulating dogecoin’s price and driving it up over 36,000%.”
my theory on the shiba inu thing is that he came up with the idea as an april fool's joke at 11:30 pm on march 31st and said just do it i don't care how long it takes but twitter's technical staff is like 3 guys and the code is a mess so it took 2 and a half days— hotpotbrothvatenjoyer.tumblr.com (@OnlyPianos) April 3, 2023
Yet it’s also entirely plausible to believe that Musk meant to do the Shiba Inu logo as an April Fool’s joke, and his gutted-out remaining staff just couldn’t get it done until April 3.
Image: GLASTONBURY, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 07: In this photo illustration the Elon Musk's Twitter page is displayed on a smartphone screen on January 07, 2023 in Glastonbury, England. Based in San Francisco, California, Twitter was created March 2006. In October 2022, entrepreneur Elon Musk acquired Twitter for a reported US$44 billion, gaining control of the platform. On December 20, 2022, after numerous controversies Musk announced he would step down as CEO once a replacement had been found. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)