Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has announced Facebook and Instagram are rolling out a new paid verification service, Meta Verified. While Meta has typically given verification to notable users like politicians, executives, celebrities, and organizations to signal their legitimacy. This will be closer to Twitter Blue, the verification model Twitter released in December.
Meta Verified will cost $11.99 a month on the web, and $14.99 a month on iOS. These paid users will need to submit their government ID to get a blue verification badge on Instagram and Facebook. “This new feature is about increasing authenticity and security across our services,” Zuckerberg said.
We’re hoping Meta looked at Twitter Blue’s bumpy start to avoid some (obvious) pitfalls. While Twitter Blue officially hit in December, it was briefly launched in November before needing to be pulled and reworked. As soon as users realized they could pay $8 to pretend to be any celebrity or company they wanted, the trolls came out to play.
Most notably, a person impersonating the American pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly & Co. tweeted that insulin, a life-saving medication, was now free. This tweet alone caused a huge hit to the company’s stock. Though not seeing something like this coming seems like a huge miss from someone as chronically online as Twitter CEO Elon Musk. He, of all people, should know the internet is going to internet.
But it seems as if Meta Verified has already thought of that given it will require ID verification. In addition to that, users must be at least 18 years old, meet minimum account activity requirements, and their ID has to match their profile name and photo. That means your actual ID/license photo will need to be your public profile photo.The monthly fee will also include “proactive monitoring” for account impersonation, according to the spokesperson. Though users will not be able to change their profile name, username, date of birth, or profile picture without going through the application process again.
Meta will also not be revoking verification from accounts that had it prior to Meta Verified’s launch. Or at least while the company is just testing the service. Probably since Musk has received endless backlash over wanting to remove all verification that isn’t through Twitter Blue.
As of right now, businesses are not eligible to apply for Meta Verified. The service is slated to launch in Australia and New Zealand this week, and more countries will follow.