Twitter access went down for third-party apps that utilise the popular microblogging site’s API last week. Users were unable to access their accounts on third-party Twitter apps like Tweetbot and Twitterrific. Amid claims from developers that the Elon Musk-owned platform intentionally blocked their apps, Twitter has now issued a statement revealing that it did revoke access for third-party apps on purpose. In a brief tweet, the official TwitterDev account (@TwitterDev) said on Tuesday that the website was enforcing its “long-standing API rules.”
The tweet added that the move might result in some apps not working. The Twitter Dev account, however, did not elaborate on what its long-standing API rules were, or why the site chose to enforce them now.
The tweet, however, did come as confirmation for what third-party developers already suspected — apps like Tweetbot and Twitterrific did not lose access to Twitter as result of a bug, but were instead blocked by the microblogging site from utilising its API intentionally. An API is a software interface that allows communication between two or more programs. All Twitter third-party clients utilise the Twitter API to access the service.
Twitter’s confirmation comes after Tweetbot developers had decried the platform’s silence over the blocked access. Tweetbot co-creator Paul Haddad had said in a Mastodon post that he had not received any communication, officially or unofficially, from anyone at Twitter. Tweetbot lost access initially, along with Twitterrific, and the former briefly resumed working on Sunday when the developers swapped out its API keys, only to be blocked again.
Haddad, in a Mastodon post also responded to Twitter’s vague confirmation, saying “I want to publicly apologize to Twitter for breaking its long-standing API rule of ___.”
According to a report earlier this week, Twitter’s internal Slack communication mentioned that the site had revoked third-party access on purpose. As previously mentioned, Twitter is yet to provide clarity on which rules were broken by the popular third-party apps.