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Twitter will start charging for API as Elon Musk seeks revenue growth

Published Feb 2nd, 2023 10:46AM EST
Twitter hack
Image: AP Photo/Matt Rourke

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After killing support for long-time Twitter clients, the company has announced it will charge money for its API starting February 9. Unlike other platforms, such as YouTube and Facebook, Twitter believes developers should pay to access its API.

According to the Twitter Dev account, “over the years, hundreds of millions of people have sent over a trillion tweets, with billions more every week. 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.” The account says Twitter will give more details on what developers can expect next week.

Both v2 and v1.1 of Twitter API will be paid. It’s unclear how much the company will charge, but a paid basic tier will be available.

With that decision, accounts like RemindMe_OfThis and Thread Reader accounts would have to pay to access data and transform a thread into an article or remind a user about a tweet. This could make several bots in the platform disappear, as not everybody would like to pay to offer these tweaks to other users.

According to The Verge, Twitter Premium API starts from $99 a month and increases depending on the level of access required. The company charging for its API differs from banning third-party clients from the platform.

Last month, this decision made several third-party Twitter apps abandon the platform, such as Tweetbot and Twitterrific. As reported by Engadget:

The “restrictions” section of Twitter’s developer agreement was updated with a clause banning “use or access the Licensed Materials to create or attempt to create a substitute or similar service or product to the Twitter Applications.” The addition is the only substantive change to the 5,000-word agreement.

At the time, Twitterrific, one of the most popular Twitter clients, announced that it was discontinuing the app, saying it was already pulled from the iOS and macOS App Stores.

We are sorry to say that the app’s sudden and undignified demise is due to an unannounced and undocumented policy change by an increasingly capricious Twitter – a Twitter that we no longer recognize as trustworthy nor want to work with any longer.

BGR will report once we hear more about Elon’s plans with Twitter.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.