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Saturday, June 06, 2009

Twitter To Introduce “Verified Account” To Stop Impersonations

It is common that people try to impersonate celebrities on various social networking sites including micro-blogging service, Twitter. Impersonation violates Twitter's Terms of Service. In such cases, Twitter suspends, deletes, or transfers control of accounts known to be impersonation.

Twitter has been facing a lawsuit from St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa this week for impersonation. When someone opens a new twitter account, there is no way to validate the identity of a person. And many times we can see that people try to open an account on the name of celebrities.

In order to improve Twitter user experience and clear up confusion beyond simply removing impersonation accounts once alerted, twitter is experimenting with a beta preview of new feature called “Verified Accounts” this summer.

Verified Accounts will feature a special seal.

The experiment will begin with public officials, public agencies, famous artists, athletes, and other well known individuals at risk of impersonation. However twitter will verify more accounts in the future. Current verification will begin only with a small set. Initially, verification will not be tested with businesses.

Twitter also suggests another way to determine authenticity is to check the official web site of the person for a link back to their Twitter account as shows in above image where San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom's official site links to his Twitter account.

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