Upon acquiring Twitter, Elon Musk quickly made several company-wide and site-wide changes. He’s very vocal about his opinions. Whether he plans to fire half his staff or alter Twitter’s iconic logo, he’ll tweet about it.
Like many users, you might have trouble following these chaotic updates. Some of them even get reverted. To get you up to speed, we’ve listed some of the most notable changes Twitter has undergone since October 2022.
1. Twitter Revamped Twitter Blue
Musk believes in paying for social media. He even relaunched the Twitter Blue subscription and turned it into an entirely different service. The company wasn’t aggressively promoting it before. Subscribers got basic add-on features, like the options to edit tweets, turn on reader mode, and create bookmark folders.
To promote Twitter Blue, he gave subscribers verified checkmarks. The old verification process was thrown out.
Along with the blue checkmark came a steeper price tag. Musk bumped Twitter Blue’s monthly rates from $4.99 to $8. On Android or iOS, the subscription starts at $11 per month.
While Twitter made waves with the new system, it was also heavily criticized. The Information reports that less than 1% of users worldwide pay for Twitter Blue.
2. Different Types of Checkmarks
Despite drawing negative feedback, Musk continues to promote verification through Twitter Blue. But he has also introduced a different type of verification subscription for organizations on Twitter with different checkmarks.
Here’s a look at the type of checkmarks you’ll find on Twitter:
- Blue Checkmarks: Twitter’s blue checkmark means something different nowadays. The platform no longer distinguishes between legacy users and premium subscribers. You’ll get the same symbol whether your account was verified beforehand or you recently paid for Twitter Blue.
- Gold Checkmarks: Verified organizations qualify for a gold checkmark.
- Organization Badges: These indicate your affiliation with verified organizations. For instance, Twitter Support operates under Twitter, so it has a Twitter organization badge.
- Gray Checkmarks: Twitter awards these to government agencies, major media outlets, and some public figures.
Musk will likely continue updating Twitter’s checkmarks and organization labels.
3. Tweets Show View Counts
Some people argue that Musk caused the decline of Twitter. They feel that his controversial opinions, sudden updates, and aggressive Twitter Blue promotions have turned away users.
Of course, Musk has attempted to refute these claims. He added view counts on tweets to prove that most users still lurk around the website. They just don’t like, retweet, or reply.
4. A Separate Tab for Recommended Tweets
Almost every major social media platform replicates aspects of TikTok—Twitter is no exception. It now has separate For You and Following tabs. The former shows accounts that Twitter thinks you might like, while the latter exclusively comprises posts from users you follow.
Musk might continue modifying these features based on user feedback.
5. Mass Twitter Lay-Offs
Musk made headlines for firing thousands of people after acquiring Twitter. Although he never confirmed how many were laid off, reports like those by the LA Times say that Twitter’s employee population shrunk from 7,000 to 2,750 by November 2022. To make matters worse, the company was still downsizing in the first quarter of 2023.
Musk defended his decision saying cutbacks were necessary. He claims that Twitter lost $4 million daily, so he had to fire thousands of employees en masse.
Regardless of his reasons, people didn’t take these layoffs well. CNN reports that several former Twitter employees have filed lawsuits against Musk for inhumane, unjust contract terminations.
What to Expect From Twitter
With Twitter regularly releasing updates, you can expect even more changes in the coming months. The best way to stay informed is to check Musk’s feed. He often announces plans for the company on his personal account.
But if these changes have already ruined Twitter for you, consider quitting the platform. Don’t worry—you’re not alone. Many users who disagree with the direction that Musk is taking the company have deleted their accounts.