Twitter Unveils Twitter Developer Labs, First Step Toward Next Gen API

Twitter has announced its plans to build what it calls "the next generation of the Twitter APITrack this API." The first step: a new program called Twitter Developer Labs, which will allow developers to test and provide feedback on new API features.

To participate in the program, developers can sign up to receive updates and access documentation when new API endpoints and versions become available. They will then be able to provide feedback. A Twitter developer account is required.

Twitter's relationship with developers is complicated. As its platform grew and business model evolved, the social media giant made changes to its developer program that caused controversy and even backlash among developers. In some cases, developers were forced to shutter their apps as access to the APIs they used was removed or became prohibitively expensive.

In announcing Twitter Developer Labs, Twitter acknowledged that "we know we still need to do a better job listening to and learning from our developer community" and says that it is attempting to shape "the future of our developer platform with a diverse range of developers in mind."

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey apologized to developers in 2015 and invited a reset in relations, but the company has continued to make platform changes that have sparked ire. As such, it remains to be seen whether developers will find Twitter's latest effort to be compelling. Specifically, it is unclear whether Twitter Developer Labs will be successful at reengaging developers who shifted their focus to other platforms or left the ecosystem entirely as a result of the company's past decisions.

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