Meta launches monthly subscription service for account verification

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By Published On: February 22, 20230 Comments

Australia and New Zealand are the first to trial Meta Verified, a monthly subscription service to verify Instagram and Facebook accounts.

Meta has announced the launch of a monthly subscription service across its Facebook and Instagram platforms. Meta Verified will give users a blue badge, and exclusive stickers for Stories and Reels, and users will also receive 100 free stars per month, or the digital currency you can use to tip creators on Facebook. The service will cost $19.99 AUD on web and $24.99 AUD monthly.

At this stage, Meta Verified is only available in Australia and New Zealand and is only available for individual users, with the vision to be used for business verification in the near future. A blog post by the company confirms that, “long term, we want to build a subscription offering that’s valuable to everyone, including creators, businesses and our community at large.” The service will also grant verified users increased visibility, protection against impersonation, priority customer support, and more.

According to an Instagram update from Meta founder and Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg, “this week we’re starting to roll out Meta Verified — a subscription service that lets you verify your account with a government ID, get a blue badge, get extra impersonation protection against accounts claiming to be you, and get direct access to customer support,” Zuckerberg writes. “This new feature is about increasing authenticity and security across our services.”

Users will need to verify their usernames with a government ID that matches the profile name and photo of the Facebook or Instagram account they’re applying for. To be eligible, accounts must meet minimum activity requirements, such as prior posting history, and be at least 18 years old.

The verification process is to curb the impersonation issues that Twitter was faced with when it introduced Twitter Blue last year. When Elon Musk bought the platform, he bought in a new policy that allowed users to pay $7.99 USD a month for Twitter Blue, previously a blue checkmark that would verify official personal and business accounts through a self nomination and internal verification process. As the service became available to the general public for a nominal fee, trolling commenced. Many users changed their usernames and profile pictures to impersonate businesses and celebrities and tweeted controversial or nonsense parody posts. Many accounts even impersonated Musk, who had his team quickly changed the feature and suspended thousands of parody accounts just hours after launch.

The verification measures taken by Meta also mean that verified users wanting to change their username will need to be re-verified.

Instagram in particular has an impersonation issue with scammers duplicating business accounts to run fake competitions to collect user data.

The service is set to roll out this week in Australia and will expand into other countries soon. Meta says it will not be available to businesses at this time but will be gradually rolled out following this unspecified trial period.

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About the Author: Rosalea Catterson

Rosalea is the Editor of Power Retail. With a keen interest in consumer behaviour and tech, she covers everything ecommerce and hosts the Power Retail Power Talks Podcast.

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