X (FKA Twitter) announces test rollout of $1 subscription fee for new users

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X (FKA Twitter) announces test rollout of $1 subscription fee for new users

X, formerly known as Twitter, has announced that it is testing a subscription fee which will require new users to pay $1 (82p) to sign up.

The social platform, which rebranded to X back in July, shared a statement on its support account this morning (October 18) announcing the planned testing of a new feature in New Zealand and the Philippines, which will require new accounts to pay to post and interact with other users.

“Starting today, we’re testing a new program (Not A Bot) in New Zealand and the Philippines,” the post read. “New, unverified accounts will be required to sign up for a $1 annual subscription to be able to post & interact with other posts. Within this test, existing users are not affected.

“This new test was developed to bolster our already successful efforts to reduce spam, manipulation of our platform and bot activity, while balancing platform accessibility with the small fee amount. It is not a profit driver.”

The post concluded: “And so far, subscription options have proven to be the main solution that works at scale.”

Twitter has been free to use since it launched in 2006. It’s currently unclear if or when the plan will be rolled out to other countries.

The sign-up fee is also different to the £11 a month X Premium subscription, which gets users a blue checkmark along with the ability to write longer posts and edit after being shared.

According sources who spoke to Fortune, new users will need to pay the $1 fee to engage in basic functions like tweeting, replying and liking.

Shortly after the announcement, Elon Musk tweeted that you can “read for free, but $1/year to write”.

“It’s the only way to fight bots without blocking real users,” he added. “This won’t stop bots completely, but it will be 1000X harder to manipulate the platform.”

The news comes after Musk announced earlier this month that he plans to hide the number of replies, retweets and likes on posts shown on X/Twitter.

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