Twitter introduced new requirements for developers relying on its APIs to create applications as the social platform aims to reduce the number of ‘low-quality’ applications while continuing its fight against spam and other malicious content. As of yesterday, new developers who might want to gain access to Twitter’s APIs are required to first apply for a developer account and wait for their applications to be approved by the company. Meanwhile, existing developers with access to Twitter’s APIs will also be required to create a developer account, but they will be given a 90-day notice prior to the new rules being enforced upon them. Alternatively, they can choose to retire their existing applications.
The new process requires developers to be more open about their intentions and provide additional information pertaining to how they intend on using the APIs. Twitter also states that developers whose applications will be approved might also be required to provide further information and undergo rigorous policy reviews in cases where the application’s use of the APIs will be modified following the approval. Additionally, the company is limiting the number of applications each developer will be able to register down to 10, however, Twitter remains open to increase this limit on a case-by-case basis and developers can request permission for a higher limit via the API Policy support form. Finally, developers who already have more than 10 applications using Twitter’s APIs should be able to continue and use all of them as long as they comply with the new rules.
In addition to these changes that are already taking place, Twitter will also add a new default app-level rate limit beginning with September 10, 2018. These upcoming changes will limit an app to 300 combined Tweets and Retweets every 3 hours, 1000 likes and 1000 follows per 24 hours, as well as 15,000 direct messages every 24 hours. Twitter added that it will be able to remove these upcoming app-level restrictions and return them to the current user-level rate limits format for applications that have a “valid need” for this. In closing, it’s worth noting that between April and June 2018, Twitter reportedly removed more than 143,000 applications that were in violation of their policies. Twitter added that it continues to improve its tools for stopping malicious apps with higher efficiency, and the latest policy changes aim to decrease the number of problematic apps from popping-up before they ever become a problem in the first place.