Twitter Suspends Verifying Accounts After White Nationalist Gets Badge

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Unfortunately, Twitter's long and fuzzy history with verifications makes this a bit hard to swallow.

"Verification was meant to authenticate identity & voice but it is interpreted as an endorsement or an indicator of importance", Twitter support said. Sign up for the free Good Morning Silicon Valley newsletter.

If being verified is not meant to enhance a user's legitimacy and help expand their audience, it seems odd that verification is not given to all well-known people regardless of how controversial they may be.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey chimed in, admitting the social giant "failed by not doing anything about it".

In response to Dorsey's tweet, some users criticized the tech firm for verifying Kessler in the first place. Any Twitter user can apply for verification, but at times the company has appeared to wield the coveted status as a weapon. "We have created this confusion".

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The news follows backlash after Twitter assigned the blue and white check mark to white supremacist Jason Kessler. A Twitter verification - visible by a small blue checkmark next to a user's name - is what Twitter uses to confirm someone's identity so that others know they are hearing from the real LeBron James, for example, not an impersonator.

Although verified users are not meant to be given promotion or extra attention from Twitter, public opinion clearly does not see it that way.

More recently, an applications process was opened up by which accounts could state why they might justify verification, expanding massively the range of people who could potentially be verified.

Twitter, AKA the site your therapist tells you to stop looking at so much, has developed something of a white supremacist problem.

Top Twitter officials weighed in on the Kessler decision Thursday from their personal accounts. Ed Ho, general manager of Twitter's consumer product and engineering group, tweeted: "We should have stopped the current process at the beginning of the year".

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