PSA: The "verified" symbol you see on Twitter etc means absolutely nothing on Mastodon or the Fediverse. On here, symbols like are just custom emoji that anyone can use and put after their name. Don't be fooled! 😁
There are ways to verify your identity on here, but the symbol is not one of them.
The easiest way to verify your identity is if you have a website that people already know is yours. You can paste a special code into your website which will verify your address and it will turn green on your Mastodon profile (see here for instructions: https://mstdn.social/@feditips/106274105538953001).
Alternatively, you can set up a server as a subdomain of your known website address. For example, the European union set up their own Mastodon server at https://social.network.europa.eu, and we know it really is the EU because the server address is part of the EU's well-known europa.eu domain.
@feditips In my opinion, that's a horrible system. People know to look for the check mark for verified accounts, and all this does is confuse people. If you want Mastodon to grow, stuff like this needs to be changed.
@darrsil perhaps we've been confusing in this thread, so I'll be more clear: there is no verification. No one here is verified. There is no verification process.
People are putting blue checks in their display name because it's funny.
Most people here don't even use their nicknames, let alone their government-approved names.
What would verification accomplish?
It's not about verification, it's about pretending to be verified.
Don't want any verification? Cool, then make that clear when you search for people that the blue check mark means literally nothing.
Because new people from other platforms will think that blue check is a verified account, which can be used maliciously.
@darrsil Maybe it's because I've been here a while, or maybe it's any other shortsightedness on my part, but: how does one use a claim to verification maliciously?
Let's say someone comes on here saying they're Google and uses the blue check, pretending to be verified.
They then post a malicious link saying it's an update for Android.
New users, not knowing the account isn't truly verified, clicks the link and installs the malicious app.
@darrsil I see. Good hack! Some thoughts:
- definitely report such things as you see them. A well-moderated server will possibly block the instance if their admin doesn't handle it.
- Since anyone can put anything in their display name, I'm not sure how to work around this. I think what feditips does here is good.
- We also need to help new users know that companies are not on the fediverse. Companies chase growth, and so now we're back where we started: we are not about growth.
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