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Why Chamisa has lost his Twitter verification tick?

Why Chamisa has lost his Twitter verification tick?

By Joel Mandaza

MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa commands a big following in Zimbabwe on Twitter.

His account is in the top five most followed individual accounts in Zimbabwe.

Due to his stature, there was a need to verify his account to ensure that imposters do not seek to bait followers using his name.

Rightfully, he had gotten the blue tick, as it is called by digital enthusiasts.

However, today his account woke up without the verification tick.

Before the speculation goes into overdrive, here is what we found out to be the reason for the disappearance of the blue-tick.

After almost four years without issuing new blue ticks to general users –except for a few accounts they felt were important in Covid-19 related advocacy- the company has resumed verifying accounts again.

The return means accounts that have been waiting to be given the stamp of authenticity can finally see movement. However, in the same breadth, those that were previously verified, are being placed under review.

From yesterday, Twitter started removing blue-ticks as part of their review process on the eligibility of accounts currently enjoying the privilege.

In the days preceding the action, which in this case has affected Chamisa and a few other local accounts, Twitter was reaching out to individual accounts instructing them of what needs to be done to preserve the privilege.

The reason why Twitter had suspended verification is that there were perceptions that accounts with verification-ticks were endorsed by Twitter. However, that is not the case, according to the company.

Why do we think Chamisa lost his account verification?

The only person who can have the full gist of the matter is his social media account manager. If he has one, or himself. But we can find plausible reasons by elimination.

Activity

If an account has been inactive, Twitter may remove the blue badge at any time and without notice. However, Chamisa has been fairly active on his Twitter and this reason is ruled out.

The company’s definition of inactivity is not logging in, for six months. Chamisa’s account has not gone for that long without a tweet. This pushes this reason out of the question.

Completeness

Twitter also communicated that for an account to remain verified, it should be complete. When Twitter says that an account should be complete, they mean that there should be a verified email address or phone number, a profile image and a display name.

Chamisa has a display name and profile image, and it is doubtful that this might be the reason. Unless he does not have a verified email anchoring the account, which will be unfortunate given his calibre.

Twitter rules violation

Twitter says they will be carefully following content shared by verified accounts on a tweet, by tweet basis. This they say is to ensure that it does not violate their rules and standards. Those that violate the rules will automatically lose their badges and stand to be locked out of their accounts for a while. Twitter has listed subjects and nuances that can make one lose their verification.

Violence, terrorism or violent extremism, child sexual exploitation Abuse or harassment, Hateful conduct, suicide or self-harm, selling illegal goods. Violation of people’s privacy, impersonation, spamming and sharing manipulated media meant to cause harm, among other conditions.

Could Chamisa have violated any of these rules? We do not know.

Name change or position change

According to Twitter if you change the handle name, the blue badge will disappear. If the name that earned the verification is changed, the verification will immediately be lost. The account in question has not changed its name since establishment.

Twitter also says if you are no longer in the position you initially were verified for, the blue badge could disappear. Could Twitter be following the power struggles within the opposition to warrant withdrawing verification? Again, we do not know.

Remedies

There is a way to rectify a revoked verification. One can email Twitter making their case or alternatively restart the verification process. This can be done through a self-serve function which will be appearing on the application, within the account options section.

Why Chamisa has lost his Twitter verification tick?
Why Chamisa has lost his Twitter verification tick?

Hopefully, Chamisa’s communication team is working to get his verification back, because his rival Emmerson Mnangagwa still has his.

Why Chamisa has lost his Twitter verification tick?

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