Bluesky, the X alternative, saw record signups the following day of Elon Musk’s announcement to make his platform a subscription-only app.
The X boss has suggested that everyone might soon need to pay a “small monthly” fee to use X, formerly known as Twitter.
The tech billionaire stated that this controversial measure is necessary to address the concerns raised by bots on the platform.
This is roughly on par with all newspaper article views on Earth
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 21, 2023
Musk has made significant changes since his $44 billion acquisition of Twitter in October 2022, from introducing subscription-based Blue Tick verification to the rebranding of the platform as X.
Paid verification to paid only?
Musk introduced paid verification back in November 2022 for $8 a month with exclusive features like the ability to edit posts, half-ads, longer posts, text formatting, bookmark folders, non-fungible token (NFT) profile pictures, longer form videos, etc.
Other social media platforms tried to capitalize on Musk’s not-user-friendly decision to remove the legacy verification checkmark; however, later on, it was copied.
However, Musk makes yet another controversial statement regarding the future of X users, as he indicates users have to pay.
“I say that the single most important reason that we’re moving to having a small monthly payment for use of the X system is that it’s the only way I can think of to combat vast armies of bots,” said Musk.
A bot costs just a fraction of a penny, but if somebody even has to pay a few dollars, the effective cost of bots is very high, according to Musk.
“And then you also have to get a new payment method every time you have a new bot,” said Musk.
Bluesky will be the next Twitter?
Despite Musk’s bot-fighting logic for the introduction of the paid-only feature, the majority of the public does not agree.
“Feck no. I’ll be migrating permanently to Bluesky if that fee thing happens,” a user wrote on X.
I haven't seen anyone say it yet without hemming, but I'll just go ahead and predict that Bluesky WILL be the next Twitter and that we should all plan accordingly. I don't think it'll happen overnight, but people are ready to flee this place and it's gonna slay when it launches.
— Velodus (@velodus) April 27, 2023
Some of the users are taking it as a triggering moment to close their X account, despite enjoyable interactions with people.
“No way! I really enjoy the interactions with people; however, I do not rely’ on Twitter to make my life better. In fact, there are many times I have considered closing my account,” expressed another user.
In just under 24 hours following Musk’s remarks, over 42,000 new users flocked to Bluesky, marking it as the platform’s highest signup day to date. Bluesky, which initially debuted earlier this year as an invite-only platform, experienced this surge in registrations.
Will you pay to use the X?
I will not pay for I am vexed
I do not like this Elon Musk
I will not pay to use this husk
I will not buy him another boat
I will not pay a single note
I’ll give no funds to Phoney Stark
Who killed this platform on a lark
— James Fell (@BodyForWife) September 19, 2023
Jack Dorsey, a former Twitter co-founder, backed the decentralized X rival, which was launched in March.
By the end of Sept. 19, Bluesky recorded a grand total of 53,585 new registrations.
This one-day influx of new users constitutes 5 percent of the platform’s overall user base, which currently stands at 1,183,616 total accounts.
Hence, since Musk merged it into X Corp., which Dorsey believes was not “essential“, his platform has the chance to fill the gap left by his former innovation, Twitter, through Bluesky.
Paying for X is worth it
Despite the hike in new users of Bluesky and frustration among X users, some of them believe that paying for X is worth it.
“I currently pay for it. It’s worth it for me because social media is a big part of my job,” wrote an Xer.
In a recent voting poll conducted on X, 86.5% were not willing to pay Twitter to use it, while 13.5% were still willing to pay.
“I have mixed feelings on this subject; he definitely needs to bring down the hate speech across the board,” wrote another Xer.