Elon Musk’s X Corp., the California-based social media company formerly known as Twitter, will now give verified users the option to hide their blue verification badges.
The company detailed the update on the website of the platform’s help center, saying subscribers now have the option to not show the once much-desired blue checkmarks on their profile and posts.
“As a subscriber, you can choose to hide your checkmark on your account. The checkmark will be hidden on your profile and posts. The checkmark may still appear in some places and some features could still reveal you have an active subscription,” the description of the new feature reads.
“Some features may not be available while your checkmark is hidden,” it added, without clarifying which exact features will become inaccessible. “We will continue to evolve this feature to make it better for you,” the description concludes.
With the company’s latest update, those who wish to hide the fact that they paid for a subscription are able to do so by going to account settings, where subscribers will now find a checkmark option that they can tick.
Since Mr. Musk’s takeover of Twitter in October of last year, he has brought several major changes to the company, including most recently rebranding Twitter to X and rolling out a paid subscription service dubbed “Twitter Blue,” which is now known as “X Blue.”
The paid verification service—which was the first major product update after Mr. Musk acquired the company—was announced last year. It was originally only obtainable by verified accounts such as those of politicians, famous personalities, journalists, and other public figures.
In December, the platform rolled out the paid subscription model that charges users in the United States $8 per month for verification. However, users who sign up on the iOS app will be charged slightly more at $11 per month, to account for the 30 percent cut that Apple takes. It is also possible to subscribe to the service for an annual price of $84 for the web, or $114.99 for iOS or Android.
Download Video Feature
Additionally, X added another feature for verified users on Aug. 3, giving those with an X Blue subscription the option to download videos from the website as long as the content creator explicitly allows download for the content that they post.
Mr. Musk detailed how the new feature works in a post on his account, explaining that verified users can now download videos by tapping the ellipsis “…” menu on the upper right corner of the screen when a video is in full-screen mode.
Tap the “…” on upper right when video is in full screen mode.
We will soon allow this simply by tapping & holding on a video just like you download a picture.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 3, 2023
“This is a game changer. No more screen recording,” one X user commented on Mr. Musk’s post.
Previously, people had to use a third-party website or app to be able to save videos. Giving people the option to download videos directly puts X more in line with Instagram, a social media service that is famous for producing short-form videos, which also allows users to download videos.
The latest changes to X bring Mr. Musk closer to his vision of how he has indicated on several occasions the social media service should be.
Shortly before the billionaire finalized his $44 billion purchase of the company on Oct. 27, 2022, he tweeted that buying Twitter is part of his strategy to create what he’s dubbed an “everything app,” similar to China’s WeChat, which combines video chats, messaging, streaming, and payments.
During the All-In Sumit in May 2022, Mr. Musk said WeChat could be “a good model” if he were to buy Twitter at the right price.
“If you’re in China, basically, you kind of live on WeChat,” Mr. Musk said. “It does everything—sort of like Twitter, plus PayPal, plus a whole bunch of things, and all rolled into one, with actually a great interface.”
“It’s really an excellent app, and we don’t have anything like that outside of China. Such an app would be very useful,” he added.
Mr. Musk has long spoken about creating an “everything app” whereby users can access most of their favorite online services and utilities in a centralized program on their electronic devices.