Twitter is continuing to get more closed, even as most of its success can be attributed to its open nature. The company is taking more and more control over its product and data, arguing that it's focusing on quality, though the move will eventually backlash.
The company announced that it's starting to better enforce its existing API rules. What's more, stricter rules are on their way. The first casualty of this new determination is LinkedIn, which has had to stop displaying tweets on the site.
"Back in March of 2011, my colleague Ryan Sarver said that developers should not 'build client apps that mimic or reproduce the mainstream Twitter consumer client experience.' That guidance continues to apply as much as ever today," Twitter's Michael Sippey wrote
"Related to that, we’ve already begun to more thoroughly enforce our Developer Rules of the Road with partners, for example with branding, and in the coming weeks, we will be introducing stricter guidelines around how the Twitter API is used," he added.
The way Twitter explains it, it wants the experience to be the same wherever people interact with the service. But as Twitter continues to add functionality, things like retweets, favorites and so on, on top of the basic tweet, it worries third-parties will not convey the same features in the same way.
Rather than present users with a subpar experience, Twitter would cut off anyone that displayed tweets. Initially, it went after apps, desktop and mobile clients were targeted and mostly exterminated. But now it's going after websites that do the same, starting with LinkedIn with which it trumped a big partnership not so long ago
"Consistent with Twitter’s evolving platform efforts, Tweets will no longer be displayed on LinkedIn starting later today. We know many of you value Twitter as an additional way to broadcast professional content beyond your LinkedIn connections," LinkedIn wrote in a blog post
In the same post LinkedIn offers a simple way of bypassing the new limitation, just write on LinkedIn first, whatever you share will be pushed to Twitter too if you want. It's clear that people who value the ability to cross-post will do just that.
Obviously, this is the exact opposite of what Twitter was trying to achieve, but that's what you get when you start imposing artificial limitations. As a side note, tweets can still be published on Facebook so perhaps the new rules don't apply to everyone.