Celebrities Are Leaving Twitter Now That Elon Musk is the New Owner

Toni Braxton, Shonda Rhimes, Stephen King, and more are voicing their concerns.

If you’ve ever eyed that coveted blue check on someone’s Twitter account and thought, “I’d love to be verified!” your wish may soon come true. Elon Musk, the social media platform’s new owner, is looking to make the application process more accessible. Don’t be so quick to apply, however — the little symbol will cost you, and it’s enough to make celebrities quit their accounts altogether.

“Not hanging around for whatever Elon has planned. Bye,” announced screenwriter and producer Shonda Rhimes.

The Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal creator’s account is still active for now, as is singer/songwriter Sarah Bareilles‘s, who wrote, “Welp. It’s been fun Twitter. I’m out. See you on other platforms, peeps. Sorry, this one’s just not for me. ❤️🙏🏼”

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Grammy award winner Toni Braxton also voiced her opinion and plans to remain inactive:

All three are just a few of the big names who are planning to take their leave from Twitter, which is currently home to 450 million monthly active users all over the world. 

What is making the Blue Bird so bad that Braxton, and Madam Secretary star Téa Leoni, are jumping ship? A series of changes the CEO of Tesla Inc. plans to make in the coming days is angering users enough to cause a stir. While Musk promises to create “a content moderation council with widely diverse viewpoints,” complaints about increased harassment, reports of racial slurs, and abusive users have many doubting whether the tech mogul is going to keep his word.

“Let’s see where we are when the dust settles,” Leoni posted, in her final tweet. “The dust has revealed too much hate, too much in the wrong direction.”

Twitter employees have also been tasked with designing and implementing a new subscription plan for Twitter Blue, which currently promises those who pay some extra platform perks, including the coveted blue check.

It currently costs $4.99 — however, The Verge reported that Musk allegedly demanded employees recreate the subscription to be totally different, and cost upwards of $20 a month instead. If it doesn’t happen by November 7th, it could cost them their jobs.

And existing verified users will lose their checkmark in 90 days if they don’t pay up, according to The Verge.

“$20 a month to keep my blue check? F*** that, they should pay me,” legendary author Stephen King tweeted. “If that gets instituted, I’m gone like Enron.”

“We need to pay the bills somehow!,” Musk himself replied to the author of It. “Twitter cannot rely entirely on advertisers.”

“How about $8?” Musk attempted to haggle.

Musk added that the increased price point is to help control “bots and trolls” but it doesn’t seem convincing enough for most to join up. In a recent Twitter poll, over 80% of voters said they wouldn’t pay anything additional to be officially verified on Twitter. Less than 20% so far have voted in favor of a paid model, between $5 and $15.

Are the bounced accounts and discouraged users enough to have Musk rethink his approach? Time will tell. For now, he’s responded to the poll with one word:


Katka Lapelosova
Kat is a born and raised New Yorker exploring the world as she writes, eats, and everything in between. Read more
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