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Twitter reinstates ‘Official’ label after Mario flips the bird

Twitter Blue has also disappeared, for now

Mario holds his hand to his chest and looks doubtful among many huge mushrooms in The Super Mario Bros. Movie Image: Universal Pictures

Twitter’s spiral into chaos hasn’t slowed down. Since opening up its signature blue checkmark to a wider range of (paying) users earlier this week, the platform has dealt with widespread impersonation issues. Among the biggest impersonation concerns for Twitter are users posing as brands, from Nintendo to pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, creating an advertising nightmare for the platform.

Twitter doesn’t seem to have a solid solution to the problem and has gone back and forth in its attempts, disabling and reenabling features seemingly at random. The latest example is the gray “official” label that’s been reintroduced for some accounts.

Twitter’s latest round of issues started when new-CEO Elon Musk introduced Verified checkmarks as part of the service’s Twitter Blue subscription. Twitter was quickly overrun by a barrage of fake and impersonated accounts. While the content itself was often funny, including things like fake announcements from companies and Mario flipping the bird, the site also became almost impossible to use without closely examining posts for authenticity.

While this was confusing for users, it was even worse for brands that now faced misrepresentation with few ways to prevent viewers from confusion. To combat this, Twitter introduced a new “official” verification label on certain accounts (including Polygon’s). It was an ugly solution, but a solution nonetheless. However, Musk shuttered the program the same day it was introduced.

But with the impersonation issues not slowing down at all, Twitter reintroduced its “official” verification label on Friday. Perhaps more importantly, the company has paused Twitter Blue entirely, which should stem the tide of new checkmarks, at least for now.

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