Twitter conspiracists have theorized that the social media platform and its algorithm have been prioritizing certain accounts, making their Tweets more visible and more likely to show up on user feeds even if they do not follow them.
Now, documents viewed by Platformer show that since Elon Musk’s takeover, a select list of public figures (including politicians and celebrities) have been offered “increased visibility.”
The list is around 35 Twitter “VIPs” long and, of course, includes Musk himself.
Other notable names of boosted accounts include NBA star LeBron James, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (with whom Musk is often engaging in contentious banter on the platform), YouTube star MrBeast, President Joe Biden, and political commentator Ben Shapiro.
According to Platformer, the usernames associated with the list are programmed to be more visible than other accounts, including the ability to override part of Twitter’s algorithm that’s meant to stop too many posts from any singular account from being viewed.
Musk has not yet publicly commented on the alleged documents.
The news comes just days after it was revealed that Musk put Twitter at a $20 estimated valuation, a staggering $22 million less than he paid for the company when he became sole owner last fall — though he said he hopes to get the company to eventually see a tenfold $250 billion through what he estimates will be “clear but difficult path.”
Twitter and Musk also filed a lawsuit at the beginning of last weekend after finding that part of the platform’s source code (the back-end code that helps the platform run as is) was leaked and posted to Github before being pulled by the hosting site.
Over the weekend, the social media platform will begin removing blue checkmarks for legacy verified users, forcing those whose profiles are not affiliated with a verified organization (a profile distinguished by a gold checkmark) to have to pay for Musk’s $7.99 a month subscription service called Twitter Blue.
The removal process is set to begin on April 1.