Zuck Says Pay Up: Facebook Expands Verified Subscription Service to the U.S.

Facebook is rolling out a paid verification program for its main platform and Instagram accounts across the US after successful testing of the program in Australia and New Zealand.

the Wall Street Journal reports Facebook (now Meta) announced Friday that it’s expanding its verified subscription service, Meta Verified, to the United States. This action follows successful testing of the service last month in Australia and New Zealand. In addition to other benefits such as increased security checks and live support for account issues, Meta Verified offers a blue check mark for subscribers’ Facebook and Instagram accounts.

Mark Zuckerberg discusses Instagram

Mark Zuckerberg discusses Instagram (AFP/Getty)

Mark Zuckerberg is surrounded by bodyguards

Mark Zuckerberg surrounded by bodyguards (Chip Somodevilla/Getty)

Users who sign up for the Meta Verified subscription service through a web browser will pay $11.99 per month. In contrast, those who choose to do so through the Facebook or Instagram mobile apps will pay $14.99 per month. This price increase is for mobile customers, first used by Elon Musk to sign up for Twitter Blue, Apple and Google accounts that apply a 30 percent fee to all in-app purchases.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg encouraged users to sign up for the waitlist while announcing the startup on his Instagram Stories. According to Facebook, accounts that have already been verified according to the previous requirements will not be subject to any immediate changes.

Other tech companies have tried to capitalize on the growing acceptance of paid subscription services in recent months. Twitter updated its paid subscription service in December, introducing new elements such as the ability to edit tweets and adding the platform’s distinctive blue checkmark to user profiles. In fact, Zuckerberg’s opt-in forms appear to be inspired by Musk’s Twitter Blue, which went through a bumpy launch at the end of 2022.

Breitbart News reported on Twitter Blue:

For a subscription fee, users will have access to tweet editing, 1080p video uploads, reader mode, and a blue checkmark. Twitter will review accounts before giving a blue check mark and will remove and re-review them if the account changes its handle, display name or profile picture. It’s not clear what makes an account ineligible for a blue check mark. The system was paused in November after trolls abused the platform under pseudonyms, including Musk’s name in many cases.

Twitter’s communication about the subscription also announces that subscribers’ tweets will get priority on the platform, see 50 percent fewer ads than non-subscribers, and be able to post longer videos. All of these features are advertised as “coming soon”.

Twitter is also introducing new colored checkmarks intended to differentiate accounts for users. Businesses will receive gold checkmarks, government-related accounts will receive gray checkmarks, and individuals will receive the classic blue verified checkmark.

The launch of services such as Meta Verified and Twitter Blue may indicate a growing trend among tech companies towards monetizing exclusive features and services in an effort to generate revenue and stay competitive.

Read more the Wall Street Journal here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and internet censorship. Follow him on Twitter @tweet

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