Parent company Meta has announced that Instagram and Facebook users can now pay for Blue Tick verification. Meta Verified costs $11.99 (£9.96) per month for web and $14.99 per month for iPhone users. It will be available in Australia and New Zealand this week. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the move would improve the security and reliability of social media apps. The move comes after Twitter owner Elon Musk implemented his plans for Twitter Blue Premium in November 2022. Meta’s paid subscription service is not yet available for businesses, but individuals can pay for verification. Badges were used as a verification tool for well-known accounts to indicate their credibility.
The subscription would give paying users a blue badge, increased visibility of their posts, protection from impersonators, and easier access to customer service, Meta said in a post on their website. Meta said Instagram and Facebook usernames would have to match a government-supplied ID document to be granted verification, and users will have to have a profile picture that includes their face. Other websites like Reddit, YouTube, and Discord similarly use subscription-based models. Meta has not yet specified when the feature will be rolled out to other countries, although Mr. Zuckerberg said in a post it would be “soon”. In November, the company announced 11,000 job losses due to over-investment during the Covid-19 pandemic.
It’s a tough time for Big Tech, but it’s certainly a tough time for Big Tech’s customers. Elon Musk’s experiment proved that people are still willing to pay for an improved experience. Massive free digital platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok are often said to be products if you’re not paying for them. So every drop of data these companies collect about you is used to sell your stuff in the form of advertising. It’s a multi-billion dollar idea that makes many companies very enriched.