Stephen King says no to Musk’s $20 plan for blue check verification on Twitter

The new Twitter owner Elon Musk replied to King, saying, “We need to pay the bills somehow! Twitter cannot rely entirely on advertisers. How about $8?”

November 01, 2022 04:21 pm | Updated 04:21 pm IST

A file photo of author Stephen King

A file photo of author Stephen King | Photo Credit: AP

Popular novelist Stephen King says he has no intention of paying a fee to keep his “verified” check mark on Twitter. The American best-selling author tweeted that he would not pay $20 for his “blue check” and would instead leave Twitter should the policy be enforced.

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King was referring to media reports that claim Elon Musk plans to charge $19.99 for the Twitter Blue subscription, and that users who do not subscribe within 90 days would be stripped of their verification marks.

At present, verification is free, and Twitter Blue costs $4.99 per month.

On Tuesday, Musk replied to King, saying, “We need to pay the bills somehow! Twitter cannot rely entirely on advertisers. How about $8?”

Musk, a vocal critic of spam bots and trolls on Twitter, promised that he would explain why the feature was the “only way” to eliminate such users.

In response to several users who pointed out that the author of numerous best-selling horror novels could easily afford to pay a monthly fee for Twitter verification, King responded that it was a matter of principle.

Other celebrities who have promised to leave Twitter include television screenwriter Shonda Rhimes and singer Toni Braxton.

Stephen King also weighed in on the potential merger of publishers Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster, which was blocked by a federal judge due to fears of harming competition in the book industry.

“I am delighted that Judge Florence Pan has blocked the merger of Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster. The proposed merger was never about readers and writers; it was about preserving (and growing) PRH’s market share. In other words: $$$,” he tweeted on Tuesday.

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