Stephen King, Elon Musk trade tweets over author’s unwanted Twitter Blue subscription

Peter Sblendorio
New York Daily News (TNS)

Another chapter in Stephen King’s Twitter verification saga unfolded over the weekend as the author exchanged tense tweets with Elon Musk.

King was one of several celebrities who vowed not to pay for the website’s new subscription service, Twitter Blue, to maintain the blue check mark verifying his account. Last week, Twitter began removing the check marks from users that didn’t pay, but Musk said he was personally funding King’s subscription.

In this photo illustration, tweets by Stephen King and Elon Musk is seen on a mobile cellphone on April 21, 2023, in Knutsford, United Kingdom. (Christopher Furlong/Getty Images/TNS)

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“I think Mr. Musk should give my blue check to charity,” King tweeted Saturday. “I recommend the Prytula Foundation, which provides lifesaving services in Ukraine. It’s only $8, so perhaps Mr. Musk could add a bit more.”

Early Sunday, Musk replied to King, “I’ve donated $100M to Ukraine, how much have you donated?”

Musk, who bought Twitter for $44 billion last year, said he’s also covering the Twitter Blue costs for LeBron James and William Shatner, who both said they wouldn’t pay.

Twitter previously used the blue check marks to distinguish accounts deemed notable in news, politics, entertainment and sports. Under Twitter Blue, any user who pays the $8 monthly fee can receive a check mark.

Several celebrities with check marks tweeted in recent days they didn’t pay for Twitter Blue, including Olympic gymnast Simone Biles, who wrote Sunday, “I woke up this morning & my check is back but I didn’t do anything.”

“Seinfeld” star Jason Alexander, who wrote last week he was leaving Twitter, detailed a similar experience.

“Friends told me my blue verified check was restored,” Alexander tweeted. “Dont (sic) know why. I’ve paid nothing. I gave no number. @StephenKing reported same. My account remains so no one steals the account name.”