Cracking-down fake IDs on Meta and ‘X’ is urgently needed


In a surprising move, business tycoon Elon Musk recently rebranded the internationally known Twitter micro-blogging platform to simply ‘X.’ This swift rebranding took place after Musk challenged his followers to design a suitable logo, and the chosen logo, a unique Unicode symbol, now represents the new ‘X’.

Many have questioned the wisdom of such a rebranding, as establishing a new brand identity can be a challenging task. However, I believe Elon Musk has a grander plan in mind for this platform beyond a mere name change.

According to CNBC report, Meta’s trademark for a white-and-blue X relates to “social networking services in the fields of entertainment, gaming and application development”.

Microsoft’s trademark relates to its Xbox gaming consoles. A legal battle over the intellectual property rights to X may be inevitable.

“There’s a 100% chance that Twitter is going to get sued over this by somebody”, trademark attorney Josh Gerben told Reuters, after reportedly discovering nearly 900 active US trademark registrations already covering the letter X.

Meanwhile True Ventures partner emeritus Om Malik told Fast Company the rebrand makes even less sense than Facebook’s rebranding to Meta.

“At least Facebook believed in Metaverse”, he said. “X has no correlation with Twitter and the verb that goes with it—tweeting. All I can say is this is yet another step in the ongoing self-mutilation of a brand and a company that is far less valuable today when Elon paid for it. And a lot of it is no one’s fault except for his own”.

“Musk has been trying to do X as a company since the last century, since before PayPal”, said Anil Dash, an entrepreneur and board member for the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Anil Dash says that with a name change or not, things don’t look good for the future of Twitter—or X. “They took one of the best-known brands, with a logo that’s literally painted onto buildings or printed on billboards around the world . . . and they’re going to replace it with something completely unbranded except for Musk’s ego”, he said.

Twitter and Facebook (now Meta) have recently introduced paid accounts, a concept I previously suggested in an article back in January 2021. To truly make their platforms more accessible globally, these social media giants should appoint local vendors worldwide. This way, people outside the United States can conveniently purchase paid subscriptions and pay their monthly fees without the hassle of dealing with US dollars. The presence of local vendors would undoubtedly boost the number of subscribers significantly.

I would like to propose a similar suggestion for Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg to make ‘X’ and Facebook more than just blogging or information-sharing platforms. One of the most impactful additions ‘X’ can make is by introducing services akin to PayPal and eBay. Musk could launch ‘XPay’ and ‘XBid,’ enabling verified users to conduct financial transactions and engage in buying and selling goods, much like PayPal and eBay. Additionally, ‘X’ could explore services similar to China’s Alibaba platform. If Musk decides to launch a cryptocurrency under the ‘X’ banner, obtaining the necessary licenses beforehand and introducing ‘XCoin’ could further add value to the platform.

Given the current credibility issues surrounding cryptocurrencies, introducing it through established platforms like Facebook or ‘X’ might help foster confidence among users.

By offering such services, ‘X’ and Facebook would not only see a significant increase in revenue but also provide users with more meaningful incentives to have their accounts verified through monthly payment.

Interestingly, there are indications that ‘X’ will soon incorporate similar services, signaling its intent to become a comprehensive app under the guidance of its newly appointed CEO, Linda Yaccarino.

She envisions ‘X’ as the ultimate hub of interactivity, encompassing audio, video, messaging, payments, and even banking services. This bold undertaking aims to create a global marketplace where ideas, goods, services, and opportunities converge, all powered by advanced AI to connect users in unprecedented ways.

Elon Musk’s intentions for ‘X’ were hinted at as early as October 2022, when he expressed his desire to create the “X, the everything app”, Initially hesitant about the US$44 billion Twitter deal, he eventually embraced the challenge, seeking to fulfill his vision for the platform.

X[dot]com, originally founded by Musk as a neobank in the late 1990s, eventually merged with a competitor to become PayPal. The fact that ‘’ now redirects to the new Twitter stands as a testament to Musk’s audacious vision for the platform’s future.

When taking over Twitter, Musk made his vision clear to the staff, emphasizing his belief in its potential as a payment platform. He argued that the distinction between sending a direct message and making a payment is minimal from an information standpoint. Musk even went as far as claiming that ‘X’ could serve people’s financial needs to a considerable extent and might one day rival over half of the global financial system.

In pursuit of becoming a comprehensive app, ‘X’ has recently secured licenses in three US states, enabling it to transfer funds on behalf of customers. Musk’s plans also include accommodating fiat currencies before delving into the world of cryptocurrencies—a domain that has piqued his interest.

Notably, ‘X’ wouldn’t be the first social platform exploring crypto and payments. Facebook, for instance, once planned to release a stablecoin named Libra but later abandoned the idea due to regulatory concerns and potential economic instability.

In conclusion, I would like to earnestly urge Facebook or Meta authorities to reconsider the option of ‘Locked Profiles,’ as many individuals and even terrorist entities, including militancy groups abuse this feature by creating fake accounts, some of which engage in illegal and criminal activities. To combat this issue, Twitter and Facebook should require users to submit their photographs and images of their National ID cards, regardless of their account status (verified or unverified). A nominal one-time fee ranging between US$1-2 could be introduced for the verification process, making it mandatory for all users, irrespective of their subscription status. This approach would address the problem of fake IDs and users on these platforms, a significant concern that should be addressed promptly by the respective social media authorities.


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