Mark Zuckerberg of Meta is taking a page out of Elon Musk’s book. For Instagram and Facebook users, the social media behemoth is launching a paid subscription service called “Meta Verified,” which will provide them with a verified blue check mark badge and other benefits.
Meta Verified is available for a monthly fee of $11.99 on the web and $14.99 on Apple’s iOS. On Sunday, Meta’s chairman and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, announced that the service would be released in Australia and New Zealand this week, with expansion to other countries coming “soon.”
Zuckerberg announced Meta Verified in a series of Facebook and Instagram posts. He called it a “subscription service that lets you verify your account with a government ID, get a blue badge, gets extra protection against accounts pretending to be you, and get direct access to customer support.” We have implemented this new function to strengthen the reliability and safety of all of our service offerings.
After Musk’s Twitter relaunched its Twitter Blue subscription plan last fall, allowing any paying customer to receive a verified blue checkmark, Meta Verified was released not long after (along with other subscriber-exclusive features like the ability to edit tweets). Musk has said that Twitter will eventually remove blue badges from accounts that were verified under the previous owner. However, Meta has said that it will not make any changes to Instagram or Facebook accounts that have already been verified based on criteria like “authenticity and notability.”
Long-term, “We want to build a subscription offering that is valuable to everyone,” Meta said when announcing the new program. In order to realize this vision and increase confidence in the veracity of the accounts with which the public engages, we are updating the meaning of the “verified” badge.
According to the company, impersonation attempts, which plagued Twitter Blue’s initial relaunch, will be actively monitored through subscription checks and a series of checks built into Meta Verified “before, during, and after someone applies” for an account. To those who try to circumvent its systems, Meta pledged to “take swift action.”
Meta-verified users not only get the blue checkmark, but also “prominence in some areas of the platform,” including searches, comments, and recommendations on Instagram and Facebook. In addition, subscribers receive 100 stars (Facebook’s virtual gifting currency) every month “so you can show your support for other creators” on Facebook, as well as exclusive stickers that can be used in Facebook and Instagram Stories and Facebook Reels.
Account holders must be at least 18 years old and meet minimum activity requirements, including a posting history, in order to become Meta verified. Applicants must also provide a government-issued photo ID that is an exact match to the name and photo on their social media profile (Facebook or Instagram).