Drummer Mike Portnoy Quits Twitter: Anybody Can “Simply Buy” a Blue Check Verification

"It defeats the entire purpose of what verified accounts once meant"

Mike Portnoy quits Twitter
Mike Portnoy, photo by Raymond Ahner

    Legendary metal drummer Mike Portnoy is saying goodbye to Twitter, citing the social media platform’s new policy that allows anyone to buy a blue check verification for $8 a month.

    Twitter recently started stripping verified accounts of their blue check marks for not paying the $8 monthly fee, which was instituted by the company’s new owner Elon Musk. While the money is no issue for Portnoy, the drummer feels the new verification process is compromised.

    The ex-Dream Theater stickman, who is currently involved in several music projects — including The Winery Dogs, Metal Allegiance, Flying Colors, and Sons of Apollo, among others — had been one of the more active metal musicians on Twitter up until his stance, so he’s giving up a major communication tool by exiting the platform. For the metal veteran, it’s a matter of principle.


    “With Twitter now stripping everybody of them and enabling anybody to simply buy one and pretend to be anybody with no verification, I think it’s time to bounce from here to avoid any possible confusion or mistaken identity,” Portnoy tweeted on Saturday (April 22nd). “I will still be using my Instagram and Facebook with daily posts and content so please follow me over there where you can be certain it is actually me posting.”

    Apparently, Portnoy was met with some backlash over his stance, with some people accusing him of being too cheap to pay the $8 monthly fee. That led to one more tweet from the drummer before he ceased posting on the platform:

    “Wow… some of these comments (even attacks) are pretty incredible!! Almost comical. I assumed it was obvious I could care less about paying $8 (or however much) for a Blue Check… it’s not even about me having one or not… it’s more about the fact that any 13 yr [old] kid with 18 followers can simply buy one!! It defeats the entire purpose of what verified accounts once meant.

    And honestly, reading some of these tweets is another reason I’m just not that into this place anymore. I’m not making any sort of political statement… it’s just personal taste. Just too toxic for me.

    I figured I at least owed my followers a heads up that I was bailing from here but will still be on FB & IG rather than just ghosting everyone! Anyways, if the policies here ever change a bit who knows, maybe I’ll come back someday. Just letting you know I won’t be posting any updates here for now.”

    Portnoy has not deactivated his Twitter account as of yet, leaving the door open for a return “if the policies ever change,” as he stated above.


    In the meantime, fans can catch the virtuoso drummer on tour with The Winery Dogs, the trio that also features bassist Billy Sheehan and singer-guitarist Richie Kotzen. After recently completing a US leg, the band will tour the States again in May, with tickets available here.

    See Mike Portnoy’s aforementioned tweets below, followed by his appearance in Consequence‘s exclusive roundtable discussion of RUSH’s Moving Pictures album.