Display requirements (and API restrictions) are over the top


Recently I attempted to build a solution somewhat similar to gnip.com (which has been acquired by twitter), which would aggregate messages from multiple sources (social media, email, SMS, etc) and normalise them. It would then present this data via an API. I stopped once I read more about GNIP and their great data collector and normalisation tools.

On closer inspection of the API terms, I discovered it is actually against the terms to offer such a service. Companies like GNIP, OneAll, etc are actually in clear violation of this point:

“Don’t resyndicate data. If your service consumes Twitter data, don’t take that data and expose it via an API, post it to other cloud services, and so on.”

Pair that with the display requirements (specifically the need for action buttons (reply and retweet) that link back to twitter) and this all becomes overly restrictive. No other social media platform enforces these kinds of restrictions.

Enterprise is being faced each day with more and more message sources that they have to integrate with to ensure that their customers can engage with them through the mechanisms that the customer wants to use. To enable this, enterprise needs platforms that enable them to manage these channels in one location. They don’t care about the source of the message, just that a customer has a comment that needs a reply.

The more that social networks like Twitter put up these superficial requirements, the more difficult they make it for companies to integrate with to create these kinds of solutions.