Twitter pulls 'blue check' for white nationalist Richard Spencer, others

Twitter pulls 'blue check' for white nationalist Richard Spencer, others

Twitter pulls 'blue check' for white nationalist Richard Spencer, others

The company emailed those users who were having their blue ticks removed.

Jason Kessler, organizer of this summer's violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville and whose verification last week prompted a mass backlash that ushered in these changes, posted the full letter he received from Twitter.

The verification marks visually signal that the accounts of prominent individuals are authentic and reliable. "We will continue to review and take action as we work towards a new program we are proud of".

The blue verified badge on Twitter lets people know the authenticity of an account.

Now, the company has paused all verifications, and is "working on a new authentication and verification program". It also rolled out new guidelines around what behavior will result in the revocation of a verified status.

The accounts that are now unverified have long shared offensive memes and tweets, and Twitter seems to be taking user complaints about them seriously.

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The most prominent is Richard B. Spencer, the notorious racist activist behind the National Policy Institute, who asked in a tweet after losing verification whether it was no longer "ok to be proudly white?"

This change is accompanied by a new set of guidelines that allows Twitter to remove verification based on behaviour.

But that wasn't all they did On Nov. 15, Twitter un-verified white nationalists after updating their verification policy, and the responses have been glorious. "Law-abiding citizens should have a right to use social networks, payment systems, and hosting, which make up the public square of the 21st century", he wrote on Twitter about the decision.

The micro-blogging platform last week temporarily stopped verifying users amid rising complaints that the coveted blue tick lent gravitas to controversial figures. Degrading his account in this fashion seems to be more of a punitive move, signaling that the company doesn't approve of his opinions rather than questioning whether or not he was actually the Richard Spencer.

Tim "Baked Alaska" Gionet, a neo-Nazi-adjacent web personality notorious even among other far-right Twitter users for his willingness to engage in pointlessly stupid stunts, earned himself a permanent ban.

The move follows public outcry over Twitter verifying Kessler's account.

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