It’s a sad day for our favorite gimmick Twitter accounts as we may have to say goodbye to them anytime soon. Late on Wednesday evening, the official Twitter developer account announced that the platform will end free access to the platform’s API (Application Programming Interface) on February 9th.
Access to the Twitter API v1.1 and v2 will soon be replaced by a “paid basic tier” which may further impact third-party support. Twitter API (opens in new tab) allows third-party developers to access publicly available Twitter data to build bots or apps for the site. We’re not just talking about bots like RemindMe_OfThis, which basically remind users of tweets they come across; Researchers have used the API to do this in the past Track online hate speech (opens in new tab).
It seems the developers are trying to capitalize on the sheer volume of data on the platform. As the Twitter developer account said in a thread (opens in new tab), “Hundreds of millions of people have sent over a trillion tweets over the years, with billions added every week… Twitter data is among the most powerful datasets on the planet.” The new price point for the tier was not disclosed. Rather, the account has hinted that there will be more details next week.
It appears this is another attempt by Twitter (and its controversial CEO Elon Musk) to monetize the platform. Purchasable APIs are nothing new on Twitter, but they are more business oriented (opens in new tab). Enterprising users can collect a series of “tweets posted in the last 30 days” based on a specific query using the Premium Search API, but this means Pay Twitter (opens in new tab) up to $2,500 for up to 10,000 requests per month. But is it a smart move when advertisers have fled in droves?
That’s not to say the platform will charge the developer thousands of dollars to use the Twitter API to build a bot (we don’t know that yet). It is quite possible that developers only have to pay $99 per month or less (opens in new tab) for access. However, given the recent Third Party Apps Ban as part of the “enforcement… of longstanding API rules” and the $12.5 billion in debt (opens in new tab) Elon Musk is under pressure for his Twitter shopping, it’s hard to imagine things staying cheap.
For mega corporations like Google, that probably doesn’t change anything. But for small developers, like the ones behind the Ace Attorney Court Bot on Twitter (opens in new tab)it will be their undoing unless they can somehow raise the money for the expected high costs.
outcry from the users
The outcry on Twitter was deafening. Check out the developer thread and quote tweets and you’ll find almost 50,000 users criticizing the end of the free API. a user, Luke Hammer (opens in new tab), said that “this change will destroy research, activism and commercial projects” and that he will “stop working on non-commercial projects using the API”. Hammer goes on to say he will “need to re-evaluate which commercial projects are still viable.” Others complain about the short-term nature (opens in new tab), calls it “cruel”.
At this point, we would have liked to poll Twitter about this new move; However, their press contact is nowhere to be found. We’ll be sure to report back… if we ever find it.
It’s a shame that Twitter continues to turn its back on developers. APIs are a great way for users to improve a service without the company having to spend time and money developing a new feature. If you’re thinking of building bots with an API for another service, it’s recommended to use some of them Endpoint protection for your security.
This article was previously published on Source link