Twitter API Tightens Restrictions Against Third-Party Developers

James Johnson

The next version of the Twitter API will bring with it harsh restrictions that will limit the reach of third-party Twitter app developers. The move which has been expected for quite some time now will require special authentication for access to public information and it will restrict smaller Twitter application developers to 100,000 user limits for Twitter client apps on various platforms.

According to Twitter director of product Michael Sippey the idea behind the restrictions is for Twitter to capture increasingly large developers and than move them in the right direction. Sippey writes in a blog post:

"One of the key things we've learned over the past few years is that when developers begin to demand an increasingly high volume of API calls, we can guide them toward areas of value for users and their businesses. To that end, and similar to some other companies, we will require you to work with us directly if you believe your application will need more than one million individual user tokens."

Company's that have already surpassed 100,000 users will be able to increase their user base by 200 percent before they are capped.

In creating more structure over their programs Twitter has turned its "display guidelines" into "display requirements." Under the established requirements users will need to follow specific rules when it comes to linking usernames to profiles, displaying appropriate tweet actions and for scaling tweet sizes based on different device types.

Developers can expected Twitter API Version 1.1 to arrive in the next several weeks.

The question now remains as to whether alienating developers will ultimately lead to stale technology at Twitter or if further approval for mass attracted audiences will allow for better Twitter clients and Twitter assisted apps.