National CBI Website & Search Contract for Epiphany
Verified Twitter Accounts.
24 Jun 2009
What is a Twitter Verified Account?
On June 11th 2009, Twitter released ‘Verified Accounts’ as a Beta in a battle against celebrity impersonators and identity fraud. The experimentation phase will involve verifying the most high-profile accounts on Twitter to help manage cases of mistaken identity or impersonation. If you view profiles such as Ashton Kutcher and Oprah Winfrey you’ll be able to see the verified seals on their accounts (And surely Stephen Fry should have one! Update: Stephen Fry now has a verified account!)
Why do Twitter Verified Accounts Exist?
As previously mentioned Twitter is constantly fighting impersonators and mistaken identity. A last straw was when Tony La Russa, manager of the Arizona Cardinals, sued Twitter after a user created a fake account and began to post offensive ‘tweets’ under La Russa’s name. Although Biz Stone saw the whole La Russa scenario as verging on ridiculous, he did acknowledge the need to take action against impersonators to protect users identities and as a result, Twitter’s own reputation. Reports that Twitter has appeased La Russa by agreeing to pay his legal fees and donate to his Animal Rescue Foundation have been circulated but sources say these rumours are untrue.
Will Twitter Verified Accounts really work?
Although it is still early days, it seems like verifying accounts could well be a fool proof method. Depending on the reviewing processes applied (currently, this is a case by case review), fraudsters may still be able to find a way to get an unwarranted verified account. However, I’m sure with the brain power at Twitter, and the reputation at stake, this is something that will rarely, if ever, happen. Once the Beta release is passed (and it will be passed) there is opportunity for this technique to be used on business accounts as well as other Twitterers struggling with impersonation making the Verified Account aka ‘Real Seal’ a common sight on Twitter. Download our free Business Guide to Twitter here