Twitter said it will reopen applications for its famous blue checkmark verification process early next year after a more than three-year hiatus.
The bright blue badge is Twitter’s way of showing that accounts belonging to public figures have been verified to be real and not imposters, but the program was suspended in 2017 following confusion over how Twitter decides who gets the badge.
In a blog post, Twitter said that it would be workshopping the application process, and is looking for public feedback on how its new policy will work.
Though it suspended the program in 2017, Twitter has continued to verify accounts, including medical experts and elected officials.
“Since [suspending the program], we haven’t been clear about who can become verified and when, why an account might be unverified, or what it means to be verified,” Twitter said in its post.
The “core types” of notable accounts Twitter will verify include government officials, entertainers, journalists and athletes.
Twitter said it also may verify accounts that meet other standards such as being one of the top-followed accounts in the user’s country and having “off-Twitter notability,” which could be assessed through Google search trends, Wikipedia references or coverage in news outlets.
The company said it may cut the blue badge from accounts that severely or repeatedly violate rules, such as its policies on hateful conduct, civic integrity or glorification of violence. But it said these removals would not be automatic and would be assessed case by case.
Twitter will also roll out a list of infractions that could see an applicant’s request for verification rejected, such as if the account has been associated with hateful content or with a group found to have committed “gross human rights violations.”
Twitter aims to introduce the final policy on Dec. 17. It also indicated plans for more ways for users to identify themselves with new account types and labels.
With Post wires.