Economics/Class Relations

Would you pay for a blue check?

Nicholas Carlson November 1, 2022


Hello, Insiders. Elon Musk is reportedly considering charging $20 a month to be verified on Twitter. As someone who is verified, my response is “Ha! Twitter and Musk can have their blue check back.” It was always a little embarrassing to have, anyway.

Apparently I’m not the only one who feels this way. Author Stephen King said he’d quit if he had to pay such a fee. (Or to be specific, King wrote, “They should pay me,” and Musk later replied, “We need to pay the bills” and suggested $8 as an alternative.) So would you pay for a blue check? Why? Let us know at And now, let’s get started.

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The big story
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Lured by milder weather, abundant jobs, and a lower cost of living, Northerners flocked to the South. Now, some say they are ready to pack up and leave.


During the pandemic, newly remote workers helped accelerate migration to the Sun Belt. Southern cities like Raleigh and Charlotte, North Carolina; San Antonio, Austin, and Houston, Texas; and Orlando, Florida, were among the fastest-growing metro areas in 2020. That shift continued last year, with six of the 10 fastest-growing US states located in the South.


But the recent political upheaval has shed a new light on the South for many of these transplants.


Some told us they “love” their new hometowns, but the overturning of Roe v. Wade and the proliferation of the Confederate flag in certain areas has them thinking of packing up. One Northern transplant said that if the midterms swing the region’s politics further right “that might actually push me really, seriously to plan to move.”


Meet the Northerners ready to ditch the South.

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Mezcal is the fastest-growing liquor in the US. So why aren’t Mexican producers cashing in? Go inside this big business here.
Today’s team
Nicholas Carlson (@nichcarlson), Hallam Bullock (@hallam_bullock), Lisa Ryan (@lisarya), Jordan Parker Erb (@jordanparkererb), and Shona Ghosh (@shonaghosh).
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