Twitter has announced that it will end free access to its API, likely bringing to an end most of the sites’ popular bot accounts (including @kottke, which powers this site’s QuickLinks feature). At BuzzFeed, Katie Notopoulos and Pranav Dixit interviewed some of the bots’ creators.
Daniel, the 23-year-old student in Germany behind @MakeItAQuote, told BuzzFeed News he would have never started it if there were a fee attached. “It’s a step in the wrong direction, as most of the API usage brings a lot of value to the platform,” he said. “And the fact that even myself, operating one of the biggest bots on the platform, has to consider shutting it down is very concerning. There are a lot of awesome, less popular bots. I don’t think any of them can be sustainable.”
I think @oliviataters creator Rob Dubbin may have said it best:
“Vichy Twitter had already stopped being a cool place to put bots or art in general, but the fact that until today you could still run your bots if you wanted to was a tether to a better time in its history, when it was more of a social canvas for goofy experimentation and feedback,” Dubbin told BuzzFeed News. “Is charging for API access a good business idea? Who cares! It’s another castle built on shit.”
You can follow the @kottke bot anywhere on the Fediverse. RSS remains free.