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.
Meta Begins Testing Super Live Streaming Platform With Creators: Report
Meta, the company that owns Facebook and Instagram, has been secretly testing Super, a live-streaming platform modelled after Twitch, according to a Business Insider report. According to a report, Meta had reached out to influencers to test the platform, along with a complete deck of slides used to pitch the service to creators. Super has only been used by a hundred creators so far, allows users to sign in with their Google account, and currently supports streaming to viral video platform TikTok Live.
Super’s website is currently accessible to all users, and the website’s footer states that the service is provided by “NPE Team from Meta.” The developer team at Meta known as NPE works on the release of new applications. There don’t seem to be any additional references to Meta on Super’s website.
Super has been discussed in news reports before. The product appears to be different, in comparison to the one described in a Bloomberg report in 2020. Super was promoted at the time as a “Cameo-inspired tool” that would enable Facetime-style calling between famous people and their fans.
Some features, like the ability to take selfies with creators, do appear to have been carried over. The platform appears to have changed course to become more of a Twitch rival for live streaming, though.
According to the pitch deck, Super will give creators a similar opportunity to monetize their streams as Twitch does. Viewers can donate to their favourite creator and purchase additional content through tiered subscriptions.
For the time being, creators will keep all of their earnings. The pitch deck also features a sponsorship programme where companies can pay to have their marketing materials heavily integrated into a creator’s Super stream.
Creators wouldn’t need a lot of technical or graphic design expertise to set up a well-designed livestream because Super appears to have integrated specific video layouts directly into its product. Additionally, there are pre-built features like trivia and giveaway modules that enable creators to quickly incorporate those activities into a stream.
Some influencers have received payments of up to $3,000 (roughly Rs. 2,40,000) to test out Super for 30 minutes, according to the report. According to another source who spoke with the outlet, there were also “paid incentives based on the performance of the live stream.”
It’s interesting to note that Super and Meta’s other products, like Instagram and Facebook, don’t appear to be integrated. On Super’s website, users only have the choice to sign in with Google after clicking Login. At the moment, TikTok is the only other platform mentioned in the website’s FAQ. In the section where Super explains how to simulcast your stream to TikTok Live, the viral video platform is mentioned, according to the website’s FAQ.
Super is currently in early testing, according to Meta, and it is currently unknown when it will be made available to the general public is unknown. Currently, creators can register with an email address and request early access to the platform.
Elon Musk Challenges Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal to Public Debate Over Bot Users, Says Deal Cold Move Ahead
Elon Musk said Saturday that his planned $44 billion (roughly Rs. 3.5 lakh crore) takeover of Twitter should move forward if the company can confirm some details about how it measures whether user accounts are ‘spam bots’ or real people.
The billionaire and Tesla CEO has been trying to back out of his April agreement to buy the social media company, leading Twitter to sue him last month to complete the acquisition. Musk countersued, accusing Twitter of misleading his team about the true size of its user base and other problems he said amounted to fraud and breach of contract.
Both sides are headed toward an October trial in a Delaware court.
“If Twitter simply provides their method of sampling 100 accounts and how they’re confirmed to be real, the deal should proceed on original terms,” Musk tweeted early Saturday. “However, if it turns out that their SEC filings are materially false, then it should not.”
Musk, who has more than 100 million Twitter followers, went on to challenge Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal to a “public debate about the Twitter bot percentage.”
The company has repeatedly disclosed to the Securities and Exchange Commission an estimate that fewer than 5 percent of user accounts are fake or spam, with a disclaimer that it could be higher. Musk waived his right to further due diligence when he signed the April merger agreement.
Twitter has argued in court that Musk is deliberately trying to tank the deal and using the bot question as an excuse because market conditions have deteriorated and the acquisition no longer serves his interests. In a court filing Thursday, it describes his counterclaims as an imagined story “contradicted by the evidence and common sense.”
“Musk invents representations Twitter never made and then tries to wield, selectively, the extensive confidential data Twitter provided him to conjure a breach of those purported representations,” company attorneys wrote.
While Musk has tried to keep the focus on bot disclosures, Twitter’s legal team has been digging for information about a host of tech investors and entrepreneurs connected to Musk in a wide-ranging subpoena that could net some of their private communications with the Tesla CEO.
Instagram Will Soon Test Tall Photos for Compatibility With Fullscreen Reels
Photo and video sharing platform Instagram might have halted its controversial redesign, but that doesn’t mean the company plans to stop focusing on full-screen content. During the weekly Ask Me Anything, CEO Adam Mosseri confirmed that Instagram will begin testing ultra-tall 9:16 photos “in a week or two.” “You can have tall videos, but you cannot have tall photos on Instagram. So, we thought maybe we should make sure that we treat both equally,” Mosseri said.
Currently, Instagram tops out around 4:5 when displaying vertical images that have been cropped accordingly. But introducing support for slimmer, taller 9:16 photos will help them fill the entire screen as you scroll through the app’s feed. CEO Adam Mosseri confirmed that Instagram will be testing this feature during the weekly Ask Me Anything.
Recently, Instagram pulled its TikTok-like redesign. Several photographers criticised Instagram’s TikTok-like redesign for the way it forces all photos to awkwardly display in a 9:16 frame. The new feed also added overlay gradients to the bottom of posts so that text would be easier to read. But that clashed with the original appearance of photographers’ work.
During the course of Instagram’s shaky redesign test with users, Mosseri admitted more than once that the full-screen experience was less than ideal for photos. Now Instagram very much still intends to showcase that ultra-tall photo experience, but without mandating it across the board.
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