Facebook Breaks Twitter Feature By Changing Its API

Facebook has updated an API used by third-party applications that allowed for cross-posting. The change breaks this functionality and one of the biggest impacts was felt by Twitter. Twitter users will no longer be able to create a Tweet and share it easily to their Facebook page.

The change has been in the works for a while. In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which some 87 million people had their Facebook data accessed without permission, the company has been finding and eliminating weak points. Some of those weak points are buried in its APIs. In April, the company announced a number fo updates and deprecations to a range of its APIs, one of which is Facebook Login.

At the time, Facebook explained, "The publish_actions permission will be deprecated. This permission granted apps access to publish posts to Facebook as the logged in user. Apps created from [April 24] onwards will not have access to this permission. Apps created before [April 24] that have been previously approved to request publish_actions can continue to do so until August 1, 2018. No further apps will be approved to use publish_actions." Facebook suggests that developers who've made use of the action in their apps should turn to the share dialogs for Android, iOS, and the web instead.

Twitter was forced to inform users today of the change. "We’ve learned that tweets and retweets will no longer automatically post to connected Facebook accounts due to a recent Facebook update," said Twitter. "Don’t worry, you have other ways to share a Tweet."

The cross-posting functionality allowed people to create a tweet and have it automatically post to their Facebook page. The feature has been popular for years. It was cut off today. Twitter users will now need to make use of the share sheet on their phone or app in order to post tweets to Facebook, or make use of the old copy-and-paste action. Twitter didn't immediately say if it will create a new way for people to cross-post between Twitter and Facebook. Other apps, such as IFTTT, have been generating errors based on the same change to Facebook login. 

 

Eric Zeman I am a journalist who covers the mobile telecommunications industry. I freelance for ProgrammableWeb and other online properties.
 

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