A little over a year ago, we wrote that Twitter had begun to implement an account verification system to people who were subject to impersonation (otherwise known as celebrities or other very well known people). After a year of the account verification system in place, we have seen more and more verified accounts. However, after reading over the information on the verified account page again today, I noticed something which hadn’t caught my eye previously. In the very first paragraph of the help page, it states,”With this feature, you can easily see which accounts we know are ‘real’ and authentic. That means we’ve been in contact with the person or entity the account is representing and verified that it is approved. (This does not mean we have verified who, exactly, is writing the tweets.)”
Notice the part I italicized. So it’s possible that LeBron James isn’t really the one who is sending his tweets? And we all know that President Obama doesn’t send the majority of his tweets himself, yet he has a verified account (then again, he is the President). Nonetheless, wouldn’t it be nice to know that Bill Gates is really sending his own tweets? Bill – if it really is you, give us a sign; adjust your shorts. (If you don’t get that, watch this).
Which brings me to the question, do you think accounts should be verified if the person who they are for are not the ones actually sending the tweets? Verified accounts are supposed to mean, they are real and authentic. I don’t know how authentic I would call someone being verified to impersonate (speak for) a celebrity on Twitter. I would like to think that the majority of the verified accounts on Twitter are actually the real deal; and that the the tweets are really from who the account says they are from, but I guess we cannot be 100% sure.
That being said, I’m sure that they have that line in their because it is possible that on occasion someone other then the actual person (such as PR personale, Agent, etc) may send out a tweet and they just want to be covered. You can find a complete list of verified accounts on Twitter here.