What are Twitter’s gold, grey, and blue checkmarks Elon Musk claims to be rolling out soon?

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If you’ve been unable to decipher exactly what a blue checkmark means on Twitter since the company’s new owner Elon Musk monetized the verification process, you aren’t alone. Now, the newly self-declared Chief Twit has announced a new series of color codings that will clear everything up.


Here’s what we know so far about how the new system will work. If it does work, that is. Fingers crossed.

For those who haven’t been following the checkmark saga thus far, Musk’s takeover of the company was on the back of the tech sector’s largest-ever leveraged buyout, effectively putting the company $13 billion in debt before Musk even sat down at his new desk. With a $1 billion interest payment now due annually and Twitter’s history of almost never staying out of the red on any given year, the genius who financially backed Tesla and SpaceX needed to find some way to bring in cash. Quickly.

Musk landed upon the idea of monetizing the blue “verified” checkmarks granted to individuals and organizations proven to be who they purported to be. Instead of being verified by company employees, customers could now simply purchase a blue checkmark for the low price of $8 (other users can click on the checkmark to see if it was purchased or “earned” through actual verification).

While the idea has garnered some income for the company, it’s also drastically lowered the amount of clout a checkmark bestows to the user — which is fairly likely to be what gave the check any value whatsoever. So now what?

Well, after the new system, dubbed Twitter Blue, rolled out and surprisingly (to some) resulted in scores of fake verified accounts and deliberate misinformation Musk has put forth a new step: color-coded check marks.

After a pause following the initial rollout, Twitter Blue will resume on Nov. 29, when two new color check marks will be introduced. Gold checks will be assigned to companies. Grey checks for government agencies/services, local and otherwise. Everyone else gets blue, whether you are a celeb or not. Regardless, all verified accounts will be “manually authenticated,” according to Musk’s own Tweet on the matter before the check is activated. Eight bucks or not.

Which sounds very much like the system that was in place beforehand, except now you can be extra sure Burger King is a company and not an actual monarch of a country named “Burger.” That and you get to fork over eight dollars a month. Painful but necessary indeed.