Twitter quietly changed its developer agreement today, effectively putting an end to third-party Twitter clients.
A week-long saga has finally come to an end, with Twitter officially taking a stance on third-party apps, banning it from its platform. To be more specific, the company updated and added a new clause in its developer agreement that forbids creating a product that is a similar product of service to Twitter applications. With this change, it effectively put the nail in the coffin for third-party developers.
If unfamiliar with what’s going on, third-party Twitter clients stopped working out of the blue last week, leaving many users and developers confused. While many speculated about what was going on, Twitter remained silent, that is, until it decided to post a tweet yesterday. The company announced that is was “enforcing its long-standing API rules.” which “may result in some apps not working.”
As you can imagine, this wasn’t the best approach and many began to cry foul about this announcement, asking the company to clarify which rules were being broken. With that said, today, the company quietly updated its developer agreement that would bar developers from making Twitter clients.
The newly added line in the developer agreement states:
You will not or attempt to (and will not allow others to c) use or access the Licensed Materials to create or attempt to create a substitute or similar service or product to the Twitter Applications
With this small change, developers are no longer permitted to make Twitter clients. As you might expect, this change impacts many developers that have created great clients throughout the years, some of which are extremely popular. While developers will be hard hit, those that rely on these clients for business will also face an uphill battle going forward.
While things look quite bleak at the moment, there is always the chance that the platform will change its mind. The company has been known to flip-flop back and forth over some things, so maybe with enough noise, Twitter will change its developer agreement to once again allow third-party applications. Until then, we’ll just have to wait and see, but this could end up being the last straw for many.