Non-paying accounts that had a blue tick lost it on Thursday, as owner Elon Musk implemented a strategy, dubbed “Twitter Blue“, to generate new revenue, announced last year. Only a tiny fraction of blue-ticked users subscribed – less than 5% of the 407,000 profiles affected, according to Travis Brown, a Berlin-based software developer who tracks social-media platforms.
But on Friday and Saturday, a number of celebrities regained their blue ticks, seemingly without action on their part, including author Stephen King, NBA champion LeBron James and former US president Donald Trump.Musk tweeted Friday that he was “paying for a few (subscriptions) personally.”
American rapper Lil Nas X, whose profile displays the blue tick, tweeted: “on my soul i didn’t pay for twitter blue, u will feel my wrath tesla man!”
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The accounts of some dead celebrities, such as US chef Anthony Bourdain, also received a blue tick.Many official media accounts regained a tick, including AFP, which has not subscribed to Twitter Blue.
The New York Times got back its gold badge this month after Musk had bashed the news organization as “propaganda”.