Twitter pauses verifications after verifying Charlottesville organizer

Jason Kessler speaks to the media on Sunday August 13th 2017 before getting chased away by a crowd upset about the death of Heather Heyer

Jason Kessler speaks to the media on Sunday August 13th 2017 before getting chased away by a crowd upset about the death of Heather Heyer

Twitter has suspended its verification program following outrage over handing a blue checkmark to the organizer of the deadly Charlottesville rally in August.

After asking how the system now works, a Twitter spokesperson pointed TheWrap to its page outlining verification details, where it says "a verified badge does not imply an endorsement by Twitter".

"Verification was meant to authenticate identity and voice but it is interpreted as an endorsement or importance", the company said on Twitter.

It added, "We recognise that we have created this confusion and need to resolve it". His bio says he is a freelance journalist for publications like the Daily Caller, he uses a picture of himself on his account and, after planning the "Unite The Right" rally in Charlottesville that brought clashes between white supremacists and protesters, Kessler is arguably of "public interest". It was yet another situation that the company has had to make amends on, just a week after the accidental deletion of President Trump's Twitter account and testifying in Washington over how its service had been used by Russian agents a year ago to sow discord. Now the company is reconsidering how it hands out its little blue and white check mark icons. "I must be the only working class white advocate with that distinction".

Any user can apply for verification and Twitter has at times removed a user's verified status.

Ed Ho, general manager of Twitter's consumer products and engineering group also chimed in: "We knew it was busted as people confuse ID verification with endorsement". "We failed by not doing anything about it". White nationalist Richard Spencer has a blue checkmark, but WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has never managed to get his account verified.

Shortly thereafter, Kessler tweeted a series of attacks against Heather Heyer, the woman who was killed at the rally. Twitter does seem to have mixed views on the matter itself considering that some controversial public figures have been denied verification and others have had verification revoked as a punishment.

Dorsey retweeted the message and assured he was working to fix the problem.

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