Elon Musk defends Twitter Blue subscriptions following criticism from William Shatner

"It's more about treating everyone equally"

Elon Musk has defended his Twitter subscription plan after it was criticised by Star Trek actor William Shatner.

After acquiring the social media platform in late 2022, the billionaire introduced Twitter Blue, a service that allows anyone to purchase a blue tick/verified account for a monthly subscription fee.

Previously, blue ticks were typically given to notable accounts, such as high-profile figures, celebrities, major companies, politicians and members of the media.


However, as part of his new plan, Musk has warned that these “legacy accounts” – those who received blue ticks before his takeover – will lose their verified status unless they pay the monthly subscription fee.

William Shatner speaks onstage at 2022 Los Angeles Comic Con at Los Angeles Convention Center on December 04, 2022. CREDIT: Chelsea Guglielmino/WireImage

“Hey @elonmusk, what’s this about blue checks going away unless we pay Twitter?” Shatner tweeted Musk on Saturday (March 25).

“I’ve been here for 15 years giving my [time] & witty thoughts all for bupkis. Now you’re telling me that I have to pay for something you gave me for free? What is this-the Colombia Records & Tape Club?”

In defence of his new program, Musk wrote: “It’s more about treating everyone equally. There shouldn’t be a different standard for celebrities in my opinion.”


Musk’s overhaul of the blue tick system is expected to take effect on April 1. When Twitter Blue was first launched, it sparked a major increase in parody accounts posing as companies and high-profile figures. The program was subsequently relaunched in December 2022.

Elsewhere, Oscar-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney recently announced that he is working on a film about the Tesla CEO, which will be titled simply Musk. He described it as a “definitive and unvarnished examination” of the multi-billionaire tech entrepreneur.

Gibney said in a statement: “I have been working on this film, off and on, for some time and am hugely excited about it. I am delighted by this extraordinary group who are working with me. Onward!”

Replying to a tweet about the film’s announcement, Musk wrote: “It’s a hit piece.”

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