Elon Musk’s X will start charging new, unverified users in a test program in two countries. X, formerly known as Twitter, said Tuesday it will test its new “Not a Bot” program in New Zealand and the Philippines. New, unverified users in those countries will be required to pay a $1-a-year subscription fee in order to post and interact with other posts. Existing users will not be 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,” X said in a post. “And so far, subscription options have proven to be the main solution that works at scale.” It was unclear if or when the program could expand to other countries. Last month, Musk, who bought the company nearly a year ago for $44 billion, floated the idea of charging users as a way to weed out fake and spam accounts. X’s current subscription plan, X Premium — formerly Twitter Blue — costs $8 a month and includes verification and increased visibility of posts.