Tweetro: A Lesson in Cruelty

If you listen to Coder Radio, then you know that I like Windows 8 “metro” apps and that I am also a frequent Twitter user. Naturally, I wanted to find a Windows 8 Twitter app and recently I discovered Tweetro. I took  a look at the website and like many users was overjoyed by the elegant design and attention to detail I saw. However, I failed to purchase the app immediately and now cannot.

Tweetro was a huge success and reached Twitter’s 100k token limit in an almost unbelievably short period of time. Unfortunately, Twitter has decided that it is no longer a messaging service and would rather be a media outlet for “brands” and is enforcing some rather developer unfriendly  API policies. Basically, once an app reaches that 100k token limit, the app developer is cut off from the service and needs to “work with” Twitter. Tweetro contacted Twitter and got a response including the following:

  …It does not appear that your service addresses an area that our current or future products do not already serve. As such, it does not qualify for an exemption.

For those of you who don’t speak the corporate dialect of political correctness this translates into: “sorry, you’re stuck.”

I’ve been hammering this point pretty hard for the last month or so on Coder Radio, but there is no way to overstate it: it is incredibly risky to develop an app on a third parties service and you should think twice before you do so. That’s not to say that you should never build a product on a third party’s API; Code Journal afterall is written using Github’s API.

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