Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced today that the company is rolling out Meta Verified on Instagram and Facebook in the U.S. The subscription service, which first launched in Australia and New Zealand last month, allows users to add the coveted blue check mark to their Instagram and Facebook accounts for a monthly fee. Meta Verified costs $11.99 per month on the web and $14.99 per month on mobile.
“Meta Verified is rolling out in the US today,” Zuckerberg said on Friday in the Meta Channel on Instagram. “You can get a badge, proactive impersonation protection and direct access to customer support.”
You can join the waitlist to sign up for the subscription service online starting today. In addition to the monthly fee, you will have to be at least 18 years old. You need to complete the verification process and provide a government-issued photo ID to confirm your identity before being approved for a Meta Verified subscription. Two-factor authentication is also required. Meta Verified subscribers won’t be able to change their profile name, photo, username or date of birth unless they’re willing to complete the verification process again.
Meta Verified comes with exclusive stickers on Facebook and Instagram Stories and Facebook Reels, along 100 Stars a month on Facebook so you can show your support for other creators.
Meta told TechCrunch in an email that it has seen “good results” from its initial test in Australia and New Zealand and is reflecting on some of the early feedback from subscribers. For context, a Meta Verified subscription in Australia and New Zealand includes increased visibility and reach in search, comments and recommendations. Meta heard feedback from users who said this offering was confusing, so the company plans to further explore the offering before it considers expanding it outside Australia and New Zealand.
Zuckerberg is borrowing from Elon Musk’s playbook with the new Meta Verified offering. After the Tesla CEO acquired Twitter last fall, the social network debuted paid verification for $8 per month through its revamped Blue subscription service. However, unlike Twitter’s playbook, users who are already verified on Instagram and Facebook won’t have to pay for their verification. Musk has promised to get rid of legacy verification badges, but hasn’t done so yet.
The blue checkmark has been a coveted symbol on social media platforms, as it was previously only available to public figures such as politicians, actors, musicians, athletes and journalists. Musk has fought against this idea and argued that blue checkmarks should be open to all.
Although Meta has opted not to charge its customers for most of its services since its founding, it’s clear that things are changing. It’s worth noting that Meta and Twitter aren’t the only companies that have introduced subscription services, as Snap launched its own subscription service last year, through which it has converted 2.5 million users into paid customers.
To get started with Meta Verified, you need to navigate to your settings on Instagram or Facebook and then click “Accounts Center.” If the subscription service is available for your account, you will see “Meta Verified available” under your name and profile picture. Next, you need to select your preferred payment method for your monthly plan and then complete the verification process.
Meta begins selling blue badge on Instagram and Facebook as Zuckerberg borrows Musk playbook