The accounts that are making fun of Elon Musk for the blue check

On Sunday, the new Twitter CEO Elon Musk he communicated that from now on imitating another person on the platform without explicitly specifying that you are doing a parody will be prohibited. In the previous days, several users with a blue check (the symbol that so far it had served to verify the identity of public figures) had started tweeting pretending to be Elon Musk, changing their name with his and replacing their profile picture with an old photo of him, which was not exactly flattering.

It is a form of protest and mockery aimed in general against Musk’s latest decisions regarding Twitter, and in particular against those concerning the management of verified accounts. And Musk’s reaction, according to many, is in contradiction with the principles he said would inspire his management of the social network.

On Twitter, like on many other social networks, users can choose two names. One is the “handle”, that is the username that necessarily begins with @, and which normally is almost never changed: Twitter also removes the blue check from verified profiles that modify it. The second is the one that appears at the top of the profile, next to the blue check for those who have it. Musk said he wanted to temporarily remove the blue check from those who change that too, but the announcement has upset several users because, as he wrote one of the most active celebrities on the platform, popularizer Hank Green, “being able to change your name was a pretty funny side of Twitter culture.”

Among the people who have pretended to be Elon Musk on Twitter in recent days, reacting to his plan to verify anyone in exchange for a monthly fee of $ 8, actress Valerie Bertinelli has spent a few hours sharing messages in favor of the U.S. Democrats. (Musk famously sympathizes with Republicans). Australian comedian Kathy Griffin, on the other hand, was suspended from Twitter after changing her name and photos to imitate Musk and posting things like “I’m pro-free expression on Twitter, unless you’re kidding me, which it’s illegal”. She clearly referring to Musk’s purchase of Twitter, she had written: “Oh my God what I’m doing this was all a big mistake.”

On Mastodon, a decentralized social platform where some people are moving in response to Twitter’s new management, Griffin responded to the suspension by writing “apparently haven’t they fired ALL the content moderators? Lol ». The reference is to mass layoffs made by Musk in recent days inside Twitter, which also involved the teams that moderated the content on the platform.

One of the main concerns related to the project that will allow anyone to request a blue check for a fee, in fact, is the fact that Musk has fired in the last week many of the people who worked for the company to combat abuse, scams and harassment, making more difficult to respond quickly to any fraud attempts on the site.

– Read also: Elon Musk’s layoffs are messing with Twitter

The solution that Musk seems to have identified to the risk of imitation – to ban anyone who does it without making it clear that it is a parody – has however aroused other criticisms, which have to do with the promises that accompanied the acquisition of Twitter.

From April to today, Musk has repeatedly stressed that he wants to buy the platform to make it “the digital public square”, calling himself an “absolutist of freedom of expression” in contrast to an application of content moderation which, in his opinion, censored excessively users. He has said that “suspension on the platform should be extremely rare”, e he assured that he hoped that “even my worst critics stay on Twitter, because that’s what free speech means”. In a tweet who was very reproached, had written that after its acquisition “humor on Twitter is now legal.”

Now, several people are pointing out Musk’s inconsistency. After David Sacks, one of the closest collaborators Musk is relying on to reform Twitter, wrote that “pretending to be someone else is not free speech. Fraud is not protected by the First Amendment, ”journalist Judd Legum he pointed out that, in fact, the US Supreme Court in 1988 expressed itself explicitly on the issue of imitation for satirical purposes, stating that it is instead protected by the first amendment to the Constitution, the one that regulates freedom of expression. “He can make up all the rules he wants since this is his website, but the parody is protected under the First Amendment, whether or not it’s labeled a parody”, wrote Legum.

The accounts that are making fun of Elon Musk for the blue check – The Post