Technology

Why Are Indian Political Personalities Losing Verified Status on Twitter?


Twitter on Saturday was embroiled in a fresh controversy over briefly removing the verified blue badge from the personal account of Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu. Shortly after the incident came to light, a large number of people questioned the microblogging platform about the removal. Some also alleged that it was a biased decision to remove the verified blue badge, aka blue tick, from the Vice President’s personal account. However, Twitter confirmed to Gadgets 360 that it was due to the fact that the referenced account was inactive since July 2020.

Alongside the Vice President’s personal account, Twitter recently removed its verified blue badge from the accounts of other Indian political personalities. The Twitter account of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat is amongst the ones who lost the verified badge. It is, however, not a case of Twitter specifically taking action against these accounts.

The recent removal of the blue badge or blue tick is instead a result of Twitter’s new verification policy in which it defines that the badge and verified status might be removed if an account becomes inactive or is incomplete. The new policy came into force on January 22 this year.

Some people pointed out various other accounts on Twitter that did not post any new tweets for some time but still have the verified badge in place. It is due to the fact that Twitter’s definition of inactivity is not just based on how often an account posts new tweets.

“Inactivity is based on logging in. Please note that you may not be able to tell whether an account is currently inactive, as not all signs of account activity are publicly visible,” Twitter says in its inactive account policy.

Twitter requires users to log in at least once every six months to keep their accounts active on the platform. This is vital especially if a user wants to retain their verified blue badge. Users who have the verified status are also needed to have a complete account that should include either a verified email address or phone number, a profile image, and a display name.

Twitter noted in a blog post detailing its new verified policy that users who are at risk of losing their verified badge would receive an automated email and an in-app notification, informing of what changes need to be made to avoid automatic removal of the badge.

It is also important to note that the microblogging platform does not have any plans to automatically remove the verified badge from inactive accounts of people who are no longer living. This means that you may continue to see the badge on accounts related to people who passed away.

Last month, Twitter also restarted its verification application process and started taking requests for new profile verifications for six different categories. The restarting of the verification process came over four years after the company suspended taking new verification requests in 2017.


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Jagmeet Singh writes about consumer technology for Gadgets 360, out of New Delhi. Jagmeet is a senior reporter for Gadgets 360, and has frequently written about apps, computer security, Internet services, and telecom developments. Jagmeet is available on Twitter at @JagmeetS13 or Email at jagmeets@ndtv.com. Please send in your leads and tips.
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