Twitter caused discontent among developers with the introduction of its API limits in v1.1. Now, Twitter founder Evan Williams sees that move as a “strategic error,” according to an article by Catalin Cimpanu for Softpedia. Williams was speaking on stage at the Fortune Brainstorm Tech conference in Aspen, Colorado. During his talk, he acknowledged that the API was “one of our strategic errors we had to wind down over time.”
The original intention of the API was to reduce the amount of traffic using third-party applications to access Tweets, driving more users to Twitter’s platform and increasing exposure for the recently added “Sponsored Tweets” feature. However, the move stifled creativity around the platform and forced many developers to quit related projects.
“It wasn’t a win/win for developers, users, and the company. Twitter should be more of a platform than it is,” added Williams.
Many industry experts have put the blame for the poor financial performance exhibited in the company’s recent financial reports at the feet of former CEO Dick Costolo, who retired on July 1, 2015. Twitter is now actively looking for a new CEO, and has set up a committee to find the next leader.
It is clear that Twitter needs to reassess what its direction is, and Williams may have given a clue at the conference by stating “news is what Twitter excels at.” Hopefully, the arrival of a new CEO will also see the implementation of a new company policy toward developers that nurtures the type of innovation seen during Twitter’s early years.