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Twitter announced last week that it was reopening public requests for profile verification, which had been paused since 2017 due to confusion around the process. There was also confusion surrounding what the coveted blue checkmark on profiles represents. As a result of the overwhelming volume of requests, Twitter has once again put public verification requests on hold in order to clear the backlog.Considering that Twitter pauses has 199 million active users, and only 360k have the blue tick (0.18%), that’s a big group who will no doubt be eager to leap in and apply for verification, even if they don’t meet the tough new requirements. Just 8 days into the application period, Twitter is already overwhelmed due to the workload. Imagine how many people were still deciding whether to apply. A public application process that suffers this fate does not augur well for the future. As a result, most platforms do not offer a public profile verification process; instead, they maintain an opaque, internal assessment process that grants profile verification on a whim or based on internal qualifiers that no one else understands.
An unclear verification process:
Since Twitter publicly ended this feature four years ago, many profiles have still been marketed with a blue checkmark despite the fact that the service had been shut down. While Twitter has some reasons to maintain that process, it would prefer to operate a more upfront, accessible approval process, between medical experts, scientists, and academics, which could have broader benefits for on-platform engagement and interaction.
However, The procedure of an open request for information, open to the public, does not seem like the best method. However, it’s possible that after a month or so, Twitter’s ability to get rid of the backlog will also flatten out, and the request volume will also be more sustainable and manageable for Twitter’s team to handle.Most prominent social media managers and Twitter pauses staff members are continually bombarded with verification requests from random people, many of which are probably scammers trying to get the blue tick to sell the account to someone else. In response to a question about new projects last August, Kayvon Beykpour noted: “That, and finally fixing Verification so that I stop getting hundreds of verification requests daily :)” (9:47 AM · Aug 28, 2020) That’s not even an exaggeration, so it’s not surprising that Twitter’s system is already unresponsive after just one week.
Twitter’s decision to re-open profile verification:
Twitter had re-opened public applications for profile verification last week. In November, Twitter announced at the end of last year that it was planning to reopen applications for verification some time in 2021, following a pause in 2017 due to confusion over the actual meaning of the blue tick in the app.
Twitter pauses then provided more details on its revised verification guidelines, which came into effect in January, and announced the public applications would be reopened in “the next couple of months”.
Jane Manchun Wong also recently shared some new screenshots illustrating the updated verification request process which guides users through the various steps and references needed to obtain the coveted blue tick.