Twitter will no longer support free access to the Twitter API and will offer a paid basic tier instead. The move comes as part of a broader crackdown on bot accounts that often engage in fraud or manipulation of public opinion.
On Wednesday, Twitter announced that it will no longer support free access to the Twitter API. The change will take effect on February 9 and will apply to both v2 and v1.1. Instead, the platform will make the paid basic tier available. The move comes as part of Twitter's broader fight against bots, which are present on the platform in large numbers, ruining the experience of using the social network and engaging in dishonest activities.
Starting February 9, we will no longer support free access to the Twitter API, both v2 and v1.1. A paid basic tier will be available instead 🧵— Twitter Dev (@TwitterDev) February 2, 2023
While there are developers who create useful bots, others create bots to harm the public. In particular, bots are often used for fraud, spreading false information, promoting certain opinions, etc. While Twitter allows bots, the platform seeks to ensure their fair use in order to protect its users.
Elon Musk explained that the free API is now being heavily abused by scam bots and public opinion manipulators. Since there is no verification in the free API, and the developers do not pay anything, this is used for malicious purposes to create entire bot farms. The number of accounts in these farms can be in the tens of thousands.
Providing a paid basic tier by Twitter will result in developers paying around $100/month for API access, with ID verification being done. These measures will help prevent the activity of bad actors who conduct dishonest activities on Twitter. Ultimately, thanks to this, the experience of using the platform for users will increase significantly, and the amount of low-quality content will decrease.
Yeah, free API is being abused badly right now by bot scammers & opinion manipulators. There’s no verification process or cost, so easy to spin up 100k bots to do bad things.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 2, 2023
Just ~$100/month for API access with ID verification will clean things up greatly.
Twitter explained that hundreds of millions of people have sent more than a trillion tweets over the past years, and that number is increasing by billions every week. This indicates that Twitter data is one of the most powerful datasets in the world. The platform strives to provide fast and complete access so that developers can continue to build with them, and users can enjoy the platform and developers' useful and high-quality products.
Twitter data are among the world’s most powerful data sets. We’re committed to enabling fast & comprehensive access so you can continue to build with us.— Twitter Dev (@TwitterDev) February 2, 2023
We’ll be back with more details on what you can expect next week.
© 2023, Eva Fox | Tesmanian. All rights reserved.
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About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.