Subscribers on X (formerly Twitter) can hide their blue check marks now

Twitter Help warns that other users may still be able to tell if you're a subscriber.

X users who subscribe to the “Blue” service now have the option to hide their “checkmark,” according to a recently updated Twitter Help article. 

Owner Elon Musk had previously warned that he wasn’t afraid to keep “blowing things up” as he and newly-appointed X CEO Linda Yaccarino continue to fudge the subscription service features further.

How it started:

One of Musk’s first moves upon his purchase of X, then Twitter, was to reconfigure the long-standing verification system. Previous to Musk’s changes, the service issued the checkmark to account holders considered noteworthy or those whose identity risked impersonation. These included celebrities, politicians, and journalists.

Twitter cleared the slate upon Musk’s implementation of the new subscription based system. Under the current X “Blue” subscription service, users are issued a checkmark once they pay for the service and attach a phone number to their account.

How it’s going:

X now offers subscribers the option to choose not to display their subscription badge. It’s unclear as to why the company is offering the choice — X typically replies to request for clarity with poop emojis — but the accompanying Twitter Help page does warn subscribers that the toggle isn’t definitive:

“The checkmark may still appear in some places and some features could still reveal you have an active subscription.”

Preprint research from a team at Princeton, published in June 2023, found that accounts who obtained a Blue subscription after the verification changes were disproportionately made up of those whose engagement consists of “posting conservative political content, exhibiting positive views about Elon Musk, and promoting cryptocurrencies.”

Unfortunately for those subscribers with good intentions, the association to cryptocurrency scams, hardline extremist political views, and the polarizing nature of Musk’s shadow over the global technology landscape have given the checkmark symbol a negative connotation among many X users.


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