One fake Tweet may have cost Twitter a lot

People bought verified check marks to cause Twitter chaos. It may have cost the platform millions.

Singdhi Sokpo

Twitter owner Elon Musk recently announced anyone could get a verified blue check for $8/mo. Chaos ensued.

Last Thursday, Eli Lilly and Co. appeared to tweet that insulin would be free, but it was actually someone posing as the pharma giant after purchasing a check mark.

Then what?

Eli Lilly disputed the tweet on its account, but the fake tweet remained up for hours — possibly because Musk laid off ~50% of Twitter’s staff.

Users, including Sen. Bernie Sanders, took the opportunity to point out that Eli Lilly has increased the price of the lifesaving drug by 1.2k% since 1996.

Eli Lilly shares dropped 4.37% — a loss of $15B+ — while several other “verified” accounts began parodying politicians and other companies.

On Friday, Twitter paused its check mark program.

It could be a costly joke…

… for the struggling social platform.

Eli Lilly — which spends $100m+ annually in TV and digital ads — paused its Twitter spend, per The Washington Post. So have Mondelez, General Mills, United Airlines, and GM, among others.

Not fun fact: The RAND Corporation found the average price for a vial of insulin is $12 in Canada, compared to ~$99 in the US.

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