Twitter Flooded With 'Verified' Imposters

Ryan Phillips
Twitter Headquarters in San Francisco
Twitter Headquarters in San Francisco / Anadolu Agency/GettyImages

Twitter's new system for verifying users has faced intense criticism for weeks. The fear among many is that users could buy blue checkmark "verification" then impersonate famous people, athletes and journalists. Elon Musk and Twitter's leadership have dismissed such claims. Well, it's already happening.

On Wednesday a "verified" account impersonating LeBron James demanded a trade from the Los Angeles Lakers:

Given that the account was "verified" and had a blue checkmark, many were duped by the tweet.

Another account impersonated Adam Schefter and announced the Las Vegas Raiders had fired Josh McDaniels:

Again, people were fooled. And those weren't the only two:

Yes, there is a way to determine if the account is "verified" because it is paying for Twitter Blue, or because it belongs to a notable person, but the system is needlessly complex and confusing. And most users just scroll the site looking for news and will get fooled.

You can bet this will continue to happen until Twitter realizes how awful this new system is.