Millions of Instagram users who’ve ever dreamt of boasting a blue tick will be pleased to know: Meta is now rolling out paid verification in the US, too, after ‘Meta Verified’, a subscription-based, paid blue tick status on Facebook and Instagram was trialled in Australia and New Zealand from February 2023.
“We are expanding our test of Meta Verified to the US after seeing good results from our early testing,” the Mark Zuckerberg-owned company shared on Saturday, March 18.
It then shared how users can sign up. Firstly, you’ll need to be in a region where Meta Verified is being tested. You’ll know because you’ll see “Meta Verified available” under your name and profile photo.
If that’s the case, you’ll see the option to subscribe to Meta Verified at the top of your profile. If you do, tap Subscribe. Another way to sign up id to your profile settings, select Account Center and then scroll down to see Meta Verified.
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Meta also shared that the subscription in the US will reflect learnings and feedback from the testing in Australia and New Zealand. For instance, one of the benefits offered in the initial test which increased reach in search, comments, and recommendations will be removed.
“We saw a bit of confusion about how this piece worked, so after some early learnings, we’ve decided to remove this element from Meta Verified for now as we begin in the US,” Meta shared. “We want to take time to further explore its value and gather more learnings before we consider expanding it further.”
Meta also answered what happens to people who are already verified, as they (me included), might’ve been wondering: will we now have to pay the subscription fee to keep our blue ticks? Not yet, Meta says.
“As we test and learn, there will be no immediate changes to accounts on Instagram and Facebook that are already verified based on prior requirements,” it wrote. “We will continue to utilise integrity checks and monitoring to keep you and your community safe. Existing verified badge holders can also apply for a Meta Verified subscription if they meet the eligibility requirement.”
The subscription service charges $19.99 per month on the web and $24.99 on iOS and Android, according to a Facebook post shared by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Monday, February 20. To qualify for Meta Verified, you’ll need to meet minimum activity requirements, be at least 18 years of age or older, and submit a government ID that matches the name and photo you have on Facebook or Instagram.
In addition to the blue badge, once you submit the verification request and qualify, you’ll also get extra impersonation protection against accounts claiming to be you, as well as direct access to customer support. Users will also get exclusive stickers for Stories and Reels, and 100 free monthly stars that they can use to tip creators on Facebook.
“This new feature is about increasing authenticity and security across our services,” Zuckerberg wrote in his post.
In a blog post explaining the Meta Verified announcement, Meta wrote that the service was to help up-and-coming creators grow their presence and help them build a community faster. It noted that some of the top requests it gets from creators are for broader access to verification and account support, in addition to features to increase visibility and reach.
Ever since I’ve written about how I, a non-famous person with only around 4k Instagram followers, got the blue tick, I’ve received a handful of requests in my Instagram DMs from users asking for my help in looking into their requests for an earned (free) blue tick status. While I wasn’t able to help them, as I don’t have any inside contacts at Meta like they might think, they’ll be pleased to know they’ll soon be able to get it (a paid version of it, that is).
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