Twitter tightens noose around third-party developers with API v1.1 upgrade

By Kul Bhushan | Updated 17 Aug 2012
Twitter tightens noose around third-party developers with  API v1.1 upgrade

Twitter has announced quite a few changes to its Application Programming Interface (API) v1.1 that are supposed to provide a “consistent Twitter experience” to users. The changes, however, are targeted at tightening the noose around those who were building apps on Twitter's platform. On Thursday, Twitter in a blog post detailed how it intends to tighten up the rules.


Foremost among the API changes is the cap of 100,000 users. If a developer is already at the limit, Twitter will allow them double the numbers but not after that. Moreover, if one is aiming to move past the 100,000 user cap, will require Twitter's approval to do so.

Now developers need authentication from Twitter before having access to the API. In fact, every time they seek access, they will need Twitter's permission.

"To prevent malicious use of the Twitter API and gain an understanding of what types of applications are accessing the API in order to evolve it to meet the needs of developers, it's important to have visibility into the activity on the Twitter API and the applications using the platform," the blog reads.


Twitter has also changed 'Display Guidelines' with 'Display Requirements', making sure that the customers get a consistent experience while using Twitter. The change will be released for Twitter's mobile application as well.

Another notable change is the requirement to include linking "@usernames" with the appropriate Twitter profile, displaying "appropriate Tweet actions (e.g. Retweet, reply and favorite" and "scaling display of Tweet appropriately based on the device.")


"If your application displays Tweets to users, and it doesn't adhere to our Display Requirements, we reserve the right to revoke your application key," said the company blog.

Moreover, developers who are working on client apps that are pre-installed on mobile devices are now required to get their app certification from Twitter before shipping the app.


Explaining the API v1.1 migration period, Twitter adds, “When we release version 1.1 of the API we will simultaneously announce the deprecation of v1.0. From the day of the release, developers will have six months to migrate applications from v1.0 to v1.1.”

The API changes will be rolled out over the next few weeks.You can check out all the changes announced by Twitter here.


Earlier this year, Twitter cut off LinkedIn's access to its API. The company had then warned the developers that such changes were in the works.

Source: Twitter, CNet

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Kul Bhushan

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