Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Elon Musk wants Twitter to make money, and apparently, the first place he’s looking is its power users. Over the weekend, we learned that Musk plans to charge $20 per month for a Twitter verification badge, an update that might be rolled out next month. It’s a change that fits with Musk’s plans to make Twitter’s premium subscription service more valuable for its most active users. But verification serves a central trust-building role for Twitter — and Musk’s proposal could erode that trust just as the platform threatens to spiral out of control.

Every social network produces a unique posting style, and Twitter’s design incentivizes something slightly paradoxical: it’s one part newswire, one part nonsense. On one hand, Twitter is like a…

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