What the New Twitter Verification Process Means for Web3

Twitter’s new verification will likely affect those with NFT PFPs


Elon Musk | Source: Shutterstock


Since taking over Twitter, Elon Musk has been busy

His first order of business: firing several top executives, plus axing Twitter’s entire board. 

Musk’s next step, he tweeted, is “revamping” the verification process that powers the social media platform’s vaunted blue checks.

For the first time in Twitter’s history, Musk plans to start charging users to maintain the checkmark by marking up Twitter Blue, the company’s nascent subscription service, from $4.99 to $19.99 a month, according to The Verge.

However, the blue check doesn’t necessarily equate to credibility — especially when it comes to the social network’s crypto communities, flush with scammers paying for verified accounts.

At the beginning of the year, Twitter introduced a feature for Twitter Blue subscribers that allowed them to connect ether-based wallets and display NFTs as profile pictures

To industry participants, it marked the first sign of a potential broader push into digital assets, one that wouldn’t lean too heavily on the Bitcoin-maximalist roots of founder Jack Dorsey

“With Elon taking over Twitter, we will likely see broader adoption of a range of cryptocurrencies within the platform – it’s not just going to be a bitcoin-dominated platform,” Stefan Rust, CEO of Laguna Labs, told Blockworks.

For its NFT support, Twitter planned to verify ownership with the help of OpenSea and other third-party NFT marketplaces. The number of blue checkmarks shot up, and hexagon-shaped NFTs became the new status symbol when it comes to digital assets. 

Mixed results for NFT support, Twitter’s first crypto foray

The security mechanisms, however, didn’t stop people from pirating others’ NFT image files, re-minting and verifying them. 

“Blue check no longer means anything,” tweeted the director of research at Proof Collective, who goes by punk9059. He thinks Twitter’s new “pay-for-verification switch” is “not good,” but acknowledges the “state of blue checks in NFTs is a mess” due to the number of scammers, bots and fake influencers with verified accounts.

Twitter has yet to release additional details about the verification process.

Other Twitter users said proving humanity might be part of a tiered verification system that includes elements of gaming to distinguish between bots, companies and individuals. Or that a Twitter token may be in the works, given that a crypto wallet is also reportedly part of the company’s plans.  

“We’re also likely to see more payment capabilities on Twitter beyond Lightning, which will be really good for the industry,” Rust said.

Binance founder Changpeng Zhao, also known as CZ, on Monday affirmed his plan to “help bring Twitter into Web3 when they’re ready.” CZ contributed $500 million in Musk’s Twitter leveraged buyout — another indicator of the growing relationship between the social network and digital assets.

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