Twitter's blue tick system set to relaunch, researcher claims

After a near four-year hiatus, Twitter is set to relaunch its blue tick verification system this week, according to a researcher citing multiple sources inside the tech giant.

Twitter's blue tick system set to relaunch, researcher claims

After a near four-year hiatus, Twitter is set to relaunch its blue tick verification system this week, according to a researcher citing multiple sources inside the tech giant.

If correct, Twitter users will be able to apply for a blue tick for the first time since 2017.

"I was told by multiple sources that Twitter plans to launch the new self-served Verification Request form next week," app researcher Jane Manchun Wong tweeted on Friday.

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Screenshots published by Ms Wong showed the kind of information an unverified user would need to file for a blue tick, including confirmation of photo identification, account qualifications and news coverage that they have received.

Since 2009, Twitter's blue ticks have been given to genuine notable account holders, such as celebrities, politicians, companies, organisations and media.

In 2017 Twitter rolled out a system where users could put themselves forward for a blue tick. However the tech company ceased the initiative later that year.

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https://twitter.com/wongmjane/status/1392865506374291456?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

In December Twitter posted on its blog that it planned to bring back the public verification program in 2021.

Twitter did not wish to comment when contacted by nine.com.au.

'Twitter Blue'

Ms Wong has also tweeted what appeared to be screenshots of a premium subscription service called "Twitter Blue."

According to Ms Wong, premium Twitter Blue would cost users US $2.99 (AUD $3.84) a month.

https://twitter.com/wongmjane/status/1393285993889898498?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

There were few details about Twitter Blue, but she indicated one functionality being mooted was to "undo" tweets, something users are not currently able to do.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey last year said the company was looking into a subscription model.

It is estimated Twitter has over 300 million monthly active users.

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Contact: msaunoko@nine.com.au

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Asia's most notorious serial killer was charming and 'emanated power'

Two Australian journalists spent weeks interviewing Asia's most notorious killer; Charles Sobhraj after his arrest. One said it was impossible not to fall under his spell.

Asia's most notorious serial killer was charming and 'emanated power'

Serial killer Charles Sobhraj would use his charm to lure in unsuspecting victims, a true crime author says.

Then "The Serpent" would strike.

He would drug them, kill them — often by stabbing or strangulation — then he would steal their identity and use it to travel through the well-worn backpacker routes of Asia searching for more victims.

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Sobhraj, a French national of Indian and Vietnamese descent, preyed on Western tourists looking to get lost along the "hippie trail" in South Asia during the 1970s.

Also known as the "Bikini Killer", he is suspected of murdering anywhere between 12 to 24 people.

As the bodies piled up, Sobhraj and his accomplices Marie-Andree Leclerc and Ajay Chowdhur managed to escape incarceration three times.

But his murder spree caught up to him in 1976.

Teresa Knowlton, 21, was Sobhraj's first known victim.

He was imprisoned in New Delhi after drugging 60 French engineering students at a banquet in the Hotel Vikram.

A year later, journalists Julie Clark and Richard Neville flew to the Indian capital to meet Sobhraj.

The couple spent weeks interviewing the then 33-year-old for a book titled The Life and Crimes of Charles Sobhraj.

Speaking to Today Extra, Ms Clark said Sobhraj "emanated power", even while awaiting trail.

"Charles was just so charming," she said.

"We knew what he'd done, but he hadn't been convicted, so we had a kind of an open mind, but I - I mean, I'm really embarrassed to say I really wanted him to like me.

Julie Clarke first met Sobhraj with her partner Richard Neville at a New Delhi courthouse. She said it was impossible not to be drawn in by the killer.

"He sort of emanated a power, like you know very major movie stars have. They have a kind of a power field around them.

"And he had a gravitas as though he was some sort of important scholar, and he was a really impressive person.

"I hate to say that."

Charles Sobhraj was arrested in New Dehli in 1976 after drugging dozens of students in a hotel lobby.

Ms Clarke, who travelled the hippie trail herself in 1976, said it was hard not fall under Sobhraj's spell.

"Richard used to visit him every day at the courthouse," she said.

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"They had a little private shed where they were allowed to talk and Richard would tape the interviews, then I would listen to them at night and we'd both type them out.

"I could see Richard was getting to like Charles.

"We thought, we're meant to do this book, and we did become very obsessed with the case."

'The Serpent' is an eight-part limited series.

Sobhraj was sentenced to 20 years behind bars in New Dehli.

When he was released in 1997, he headed back to France after a warrant for his extradition to Thailand had expired.

Sobhraj walked free and returned to France in 1997 after serving 20 years.

In 2003, for reasons that still remain a mystery, Sobhraj returned to Nepal; the only country that had a warrant out for his arrest.

There he was imprisoned to a life sentence for killing American Connie Jo Bronzich and her partner Canadian Laurent Carriere.

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