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Twitter brings back "official" label after verified impersonator accounts run wild

Reports of bankruptcy fears at Twitter
MoneyWatch: Reports of bankruptcy fears at Twitter 05:44

Twitter on Friday brought back its gray "official" label to verify some accounts, just days after CEO Elon Musk scrapped it. Twitter Support said they've re-added the feature to "combat impersonation." 

Since the revamped Twitter Blue went live on Wednesday, users are now able to obtain a blue tick as long as they subscribe and pay $8 a month. On the same day of the rollout, the social media company added an official gray marker that would distinguish accounts that were verified. However, several hours into the plan, Twitter removed the gray marker and said it would be "aggressively going after impersonation and deception" in lieu of it. 

Twitter 'Official' Mark
Here's the platform's account with a gray "official" label.  Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Since then, Twitter has become a cesspool of verified accounts pretending to be celebrities like Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James, politicians like former President George W. Bush, and even large companies, including drugmaker Eli Lilly, as users test or exploit Twitter's new system. 

On Friday, Twitter reversed its tune and returned the gray marker to some accounts.

Despite the update, many on Twitter still raised concerns about accounts' authenticities. 

Musk previously said any handles engaging in impersonation without clearly specifying they're a parody account would be permanently suspended. He clarified on Thursday that those accounts would need to include "parody" in their name as well. 

While parody accounts and impersonations have always existed on the platform, experts and users warned that putting a price on verified badges could sow confusion, misinformation and scams. 

Meanwhile, less than a month since taking over, Musk warned Twitter employees that the company could go bankrupt if it fails to boost subscription revenue.

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