Elon Musk company X (previously known as Twitter) is testing a “Not a Bot” program in New Zealand and the Philippines that charges new accounts with an annual fee for posting and interacting on the platform. The company believes this new program will help to reduce bots and spammers who try to manipulate the platform and affect the experience of other users.
“As of October 17th, 2023, we’ve started testing “Not A Bot”, a new subscription method for new users in two countries. This new test was developed to bolster our already significant efforts to reduce spam, manipulation of our platform, and bot activity. This will evaluate a potentially powerful measure to help us combat bots and spammers on X while balancing platform accessibility with the small fee amount. Within this test, existing users are not affected,” the company said in a blog post.
Users creating new accounts on the web in New Zealand and the Philippines are now required to verify their phone number. Moreover, new users will have to select a subscription model of USD 1 annual fee (prices vary by country and currency), X Premium, or Verified Organization.
These subscriptions allow new users to perform actions such as post content, Like posts, Replies, Repost, and more. New users who opt out of subscription can only perform read-only actions, such as Read posts, Watch videos, and Follow accounts.
The “Not a Bot” program is currently available in New Zealand for an annual fee of NZD 1.43 (around Rs. 70) and in the Philippines for PHP 42.51 (around Rs. 62) per year. The company has yet to announce the availability and pricing of the “Not a Bot” program in other countries.