There are few questions I get more often from journalists and other Nieman Lab readers than this one: How do I get verified on Twitter? Stored may not take checks anymore, but that blue check is still valuable currency on social media. While it’s supposed to simply indicate that Twitter users really are who they say they are, it’s come to symbolize a lot more. Sometimes it’s a career or even life goal:
It's time. A 2020 goal is to be verified on Twitter, any idea how?? 😂
— Tim Schofield (@qbking77) January 11, 2020
my goal in life is to become verified on Twitter or have someone verified follow me… @jimmyfallon please? thanks so much!!
— skipper rocks (@addyg117) January 7, 2020
My one goal in life is to be verified before @yugioh gets verified
— Brutal Koopa Kid (@YourPalCorn) January 7, 2020
My only goal in life is to get verified. Idc what app I just want a check mark thatd be dope
— jake🎒 (@nhlwake) January 8, 2020
Sometimes it’s a privileged caste, “the blue checks,” a NYC/DC social media elite that isn’t as bright as it thinks:
Blue checks changing their Twitter bios from Russian expert to Ukraine expert to Middle East expert
— Adam Townsend (@adamscrabble) January 9, 2020
I'm already looking forward to all the tweets from blue checks wishing for Yang to be on the debate stage because it's less fun without him there
— Hambone Fakenamington🧢🦵 (@2theLeff) January 11, 2020
The fact royals opt out of an hereditary aristocracy to launch some direct-to-consumer, spun-bullshit, goop-style lifestyle brand is really quite telling in its social hierarchy implications.
It's the triumph of the blue checks over the blue bloods.https://t.co/FEovSnvu2s
— Antonio Garca Martnez (@antoniogm) January 10, 2020
Yes, the #NeverWarren thing is a bit messed up. I'd never vote for her in a primary, but GE is different. But I wish blue checks had the same energy to defend Kamala when awful hashtags about her trended last year & before. Berners made NeverKamala a thing before she even ran…
— jen mndez (@jenmendez_) January 15, 2020
And this is how Twitter ends.
The blue checks won. They never really wanted you to talk to them. I suggest unfollowing. https://t.co/bR3UhTIFjY
— Russian Asset Stacey (@ScotsFyre) January 8, 2020
Part of the interest in verification came from the fact that the process is so opaque. When @NiemanLab got verified in 2012, it just…happened. No application, no nothing the blue check just showed up one day. When the entire Nieman Lab staff got verified in 2014, we had to send in an Excel spreadsheet (!) with everyone’s Twitter handles in it.
.@niemanlab is now a verified account! Apparently, 92,741 followers is the cutoff.
— Joshua Benton (@jbenton) August 17, 2012
So what’s a thirsty tweeter to do?
CEO Jack Dorsey was asked that question in a video just published by Wired, in which he answers a number of questions from Twitter users. The Verge noted that, in one of his replies, Dorsey says there probably won’t ever be an Edit button on Twitter, alas. But they seem to have skipped over this exchange, six minutes and 21 seconds in. Dorsey is answering a question from @logmey92 (Logan Meyer) that was asked a few weeks ago:
How does one acquire the illustrious check mark on twitter?
— Logan Meyer (@Logmey92) December 9, 2019
There’s a guy named Kayvon, and he handles all the verification, which is the blue checkmark. So if you either DM him, or mention him, you have a high probability of getting a blue checkmark. So it’s @K-A-Y-V-Z. Verification, he’s the verification god. So just go to him and he’ll get you sorted.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Twitter’s head of product is a pretty busy fellow and not the person making granular decisions on who gets a blue check and who doesn’t. So I strongly suspect Jack is playing a little prank on his colleague by making his DM inbox and mentions utterly useless.
One clue is that the guy named Kayvon has liked these three tweets:
— Kill it with 🔥 (@D41XY) January 14, 2020
— Brandon Borrman (@bborrman) January 14, 2020
— Brandon Borrman (@bborrman) January 14, 2020
And responded to that last one with this gif:
— Kayvon Beykpour (@kayvz) January 14, 2020
And changed his Twitter bio to: “product lead @twitter & co-founder of @Periscopeco. SORRY IM NOT THE VERIFICATION GOD AND WONT BE ABLE TO VERIFY YOU.”
But that hasn’t stopped the committed masses from knocking on his door:
@kayvz sooooooo verification god…. can i get verified
— kaleb (@digitalkaleb) January 14, 2020
@kayvz Would be really cool if u could lay ur hands on me so I can be verified.
— Dr_Rager (@blanosBthanos) January 15, 2020
@kayvz mr. Dorsey said youre the man to talk to.
— THE REAL Mike V (@mikeyvern246) January 15, 2020
But seriously, who are you gonna trust? Multi-billionaire Jack Dorsey, CEO of two publicly traded companies and man who meditates for two hours a day? Or “a guy named Kayvon”? DM away, I say.
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