Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Elon Musk trade barbs over plan to pay for Twitter verification

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and tech magnate Elon Musk were at it again on Twitter, with Ms. Ocasio-Cortez criticizing Mr. Musk’s plan to pay for verification.

The New York Democrat started the virtual food fight late Tuesday night when she chided Mr. Musk’s intent to “sell people on the idea that ‘free speech’ is actually a $8/mo subscription plan.”

Twitter’s new owner quipped back, “Your feedback is appreciated, now pay $8.”

He later mocked Ms. Ocasio-Cortez on Wednesday for equating the verification feature — the blue checkmark seen next to the names of public figures and organizations — with “free speech” and for complaining about the $8 monthly price while selling a $58 sweatshirt on the congresswoman’s website.

Ms. Ocasio-Cortez responded by saying “my twitter mentions/notifications conveniently aren’t working tonight, so I was informed via text that I seem to have gotten under a certain billionaire’s skin.”

Soon after, she defended her sweatshirt prices by saying her workers are unionized, well paid and have full benefits, and jeered Mr. Musk’s approach to changing the social media platform.

Mr. Musk finalized his purchase of Twitter last week and appears to be shaping the platform’s new direction by floating ideas to his more than 110 million followers to see how they react.

For example, Mr. Musk seemed to arrive at the $8 fee for verification after famous horror novelist Stephen King rejected the idea of having to pay $20 per month to keep his blue check.

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