It’s another day of bizarre twist in the Twitterverse as many celebrities and high profile South African Twitter users that only appear to have more than 1 million followers woke up with their blue checkmark back on their profiles, even without having subscribed to the $8 a month premium service.
On Saturday, multiple notable South African Twitter users in the likes of Sizwe Dlomo, Cassper Nyovest, Black Coffee, Minnie Dlamini and digital content creator Karabo Mokgoko noticed that their blue verification checks had vanished on Friday (April 20), five months after Elon Musk announced in November that he’s getting rid of the ‘legacy’ blue verified accounts and introducing the paid verification system to make the social media platform profitable, are now reinstated.
Many were unhappy over having to pay to keep the badge, and therefore had their blue badge taken away early this month (April 1). But today, Sunday, many woke to a new day with the blue check reinstated. More strangely, however, is the fact that even profiles of noted personalities who have died, including Anthony Bourdain, Chadwick Boseman, and Kobe Bryant, have a verified check mark next on their accounts, misleadingly indicating that they are subscribed to the new paid feature.
“This account is verified because they are subscribed to Twitter Blue and verified their phone number,” reads a message when one lands on accounts belonging to the likes of radio personality Sizwe Dlomo, who was quick to refute suggestions that he may have subscribed to the service as seen in the Twitter screenshot below.
The move comes just days after the South African-born Tesla billionaire admitted that he was “personally paying” for the verification of high profile celebs LeBron James, Stephen King, and William Shatner. If that’s anything to go by, we can assume that he’s paid for Mzansi’s beloved Twitter big names, well not literally … but who knows!
However, it’s important to note that while most of those with lesser than a million followers such as popular commentator Phil Mphela and Keabetswe Jan (@akreana_), known for starting the ‘o jewa keng’ viral hashtag weren’t given back their blue badge, few others with even bigger numbers like Twitter co-founder and former CEO, Jack Dorsey, who has 6.5 million followers, haven’t been so lucky.