Twitter photo sharing service TweetPhoto is encouraging developers to use its platform by giving them a way to earn some money. The service pays developers by the number of photos that its users upload via the TweetPhoto API.
TweetPhoto co-founder Sean Callahan says developers earn between a penny and two and a half cents per photo, depending upon the app's user base and the number of uploads. TweetPhoto then apparently makes the money back showing advertisements on the photo display pages.
The best example integration, says Callahan, is a Twitter app for the Blackberry called UberTwitter:
"It has fully taken advantage of our API and included uploading, voting, favoriting, comment posting, tweet posting, etc... It is really a slick integration and has resulted in a 50% increase in photos uploaded through his application."
More photos uploaded means more revenue for the developer, even if it is a couple pennies at a time. Those pennies add up when there's enough volume from users getting value from your application.
It's rare to find an API willing to pay directly, as opposed to sharing ad revenue or similar setup. The paramount example of an API that pays developers is the Amazon eCommerce API, which through its affiliate program alots about 5% to the referrer. We also recently covered a concert API that pays developers when users buy tickets.