Is Twitter going to make clear rules for automated processes? I have had the application suspended for almost a month and no one of the operators is able to properly assist in this matter.
According to API terms, it is stated:
“If your application performs automatic actions (including tweeting or other content updates), make sure you comply with the Automation Rules found here”
This statement clearly implies that a “sort of automation” is allowed. However, the automation rules are somewhere far beyond clarity and it is difficult to punctually differentiate if certain operations are allowed or not.
While there are applications like Tweet Adder, which send automated tweets given a configurable delay or time interval between messages, I have my software suspended for featuring such an automated action (I already removed automated follows/un-follows). I have been trying to comply with Twitter’s rules over the last month but I do not see a rule that explicitly refers to this kind of automation, and what is even worse, none of the operators has been able to address these questions:
What is the minimum interval allowed?
An interval of two minutes would result in 720 tweets daily, as maximum, which is less than the maximum allowed (1,000). Is such a feature permitted? If not, why are there many applications like Tweet Adder which featuring such a characteristic have not been suspended like mine was?
Generally, Twitter’s rules talks about a reasonable number of tweets, but computers do not understand the term “reasonable”. We as developers need precise instructions and rules to develop our applications accordingly and to avoid these unfair suspensions that in the end are being caused by vaguely written rules. I see many possible solutions:
- To establish a minimum Tweet interval for automated posts. Those applications that do not comply with that rule, once caught, get suspended;
- If Twitter has already set daily limits, which cannot be exceeded by applications, why not to ONLY ban those users who continuously send spam, no matter if it comes from manually or automated actions;
- To reduce the number of allowed daily tweets. Let’s say 100 instead of 1,000. Those who consume the allowed quota cannot post for the rest of the day.
Actually, with a top limit of 1,000 tweets a day, it is Twitter who encourages automated actions as users who want to use the total tweet allowance are not violating any rule, but in order to post such a massive number of messages, it is obvious that an automated process is required. So here, Twitter’s rules are slightly contradictory to the limits.
It would be beneficial if Twitter reconsidered these gaps carefully AND QUICKLY. I as a developer, find this situation extremely painful because my clients send us e-mails every day asking for a solution, but I have no longer idea of what to say because the solution MUST come from Twitter. I am trying to comply with Twitter’s rules, but WHAT’S EXACTLY THE RULE I SHOULD COMPLY WITH? And the answer is, THERE IS NO SUCH A RULE. If Tweet Adder is still operating while other applications doing the same get suspended, there is something that is not working properly here.
Please Twitter, put your hands on it and establish clear and well-defined limits, at least for developers. If you want, leave things as they are for manual use, but for the correct development of application, fair rules will be welcome. As I said, I cannot indicate the computer what a reasonable use of the API is if there are not accurate, definite, exact, or specific NUMBERS perfectly defined.
Is it possible for operators to escalate this topic to rule makers, committee, or reviewers with higher authority? The situation is no longer sustainable and unfair for many developers. I would appreciate a QUICK solution.