Tech | November 12, 2022 2:49 pm

Twitter Blue Set Eli Lilly’s Stock Price Plunging This Week

Social media has its downsides

Eli Lilly
How much of an effect can Twitter have on a company's stock?
Cristina Arias/Cover/Getty Images

One of the most noticeable changes that Elon Musk has implemented as the owner of Twitter was a revamped version of account verification, available to everyone regardless of celebrity status. That was the idea, at least — a high-profile change that would usher in a new era of Twitter monetization.

There’s an old saying about the best-laid plans, however, and that definitely proved to be the case here. Instead of Twitter’s new verification system boosting Twitter’s revenue, it had the effect of causing pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly’s stock price to plummet earlier this week.

What happened? As HuffPost reports, someone signed up for Twitter Blue using the username EliLillyandCo. (Eli Lilly’s actual username? @LillyPad.) The fake Eli Lilly then announced on Thursday afternoon that insulin would be free from now on. By Friday, the company’s stock price had dropped from $368.36 to $346.37. That’s a lot of value wiped out for the price of an $8 Twitter Blue membership.

A spokesperson for the company told HuffPost that “[i]n recent days, fake/parody Twitter accounts for Lilly have communicated false information and we’re working to correct this situation.”

Eli Lilly wasn’t the only company to deal with a prankster taking full advantage of Twitter’s new verification program. This included everyone from musician Doja Cat to someone who impersonated Nintendo. The end result, reported The New York Times, led to further concern from advertisers and prompted at least one media outlet to shift its social media presence away from Twitter entirely.