Twitter Card Images suddenly stopped working


#1

My Twitter Card Images have suddenly stopped working. They have been absolutely fine for several months and now all of sudden they are not there, site-wide. The Twitter Validator says everything is fine but doesn’t show an image. And if I tweet no image is shown either. I haven’t changed anything on the site for a while so I can’t really work out why the images have gone.
Any thoughts?
the site is:


#2

For whatever reason, when I try to grab your page as the Twitterbot user-agent, I’m hitting a 403 error. It does look like the tags are there in the browser, but it cannot be fetched by the crawler. This was probably some recent change because the crawler has some information cached but the images are not showing.

Check the troubleshooting post for more steps to check. Also make sure that you’re not blocking Twitter’s outgoing IPs (these were recently changed).


#3

Hi Andy
Thanks for such a quick reply.
I checked the troubleshooting post and everything on it didn’t apply or I had done already. I am also not blocking any outgoing IPs.
Any other thoughts?
Thanks!
Andrew


#4

I’m trying to fetch the page using curl:

$ curl -A Twitterbot http://www.muteseries.com/
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//IETF//DTD HTML 2.0//EN">
<html><head>
<title>403 Forbidden</title>
</head><body>
<h1>Forbidden</h1>
<p>You don't have permission to access /
on this server.</p>
</body></html>

Works fine with Chrome user-agent. I can’t progress past that myself, unfortunately. Looks like a server config setting is somehow blocking the crawler.


#5

OK, thanks Andy.
I’ll get in touch with my Server Provider and see if they have any thoughts. I’ll let you know what they say.
cheers
Andrew


#6

Hi Andy,
Eek! This is what my server provider said:

"Dear Customer,

We have been blocking the twitter bot for quite some time so I’m surprised to hear you are just now having issues. This bot is on our list of bots we block entirely as the amount of traffic it generates is abusive to our servers. Unfortunately I would have no workaround for you regarding this as we simply cannot allow Twitter Bot to connect to our services."

Is that normal?

cheers
Andy


#7

I would say that is not normal, but understandable if you are using a small hosting provider who is trying to conserve resources and cut expenses.

As an example, larger popular service providers like Heroku, AWS, MS Azure and IBM Bluemix do not block twitterbot by default.


#8

Hi Jon,

Thanks for that.

Just one other thing… the image I use for the Twitter card is warehoused on a separate domain. Is that the domain that needs to be ‘unblocked’ – not the actual website itself?

Also, I had the feeling that Twitter cached the images for the cards. So if it worked before, wouldn’t it keep working due to the cache? Or does the cache erase itself every now and again?

Many thanks,
Andy


#9

Yes, the domain where the images are would also need to be accessible by the crawler. The crawler caches data for around 7 days, after which it will attempt to recrawl and recache.


#10

Thanks Andy.
Just one final thing. Do you know if is it possible to warehouse images for Twitter Cards on Flickr?
cheers
Andrew


#11

So long as Flickr is not blocking Twitterbot from crawling images, I don’t see why that would not work. I think our code examples for Cards in the documentation actually use Flickr-hosted images.


#12

OK. Thanks Andy!


#13

Hi Andy,

So I warehoused the images for my Twitter cards on Flickr and a week later the cards are still image-less :frowning: Not sure what I am doing wrong. Is there anything at your end that you can check?

site: http://www.muteseries.com

Flickr image: https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/582/32379011876_0d595bfb52_c.jpg?’.uniqid().’

I stuck the ‘uniqid’ query at the end of the URL as I read that was a good way to make the image URI different every time forcing Twitter to fetch it. Is that OK?

Many thanks.
Andrew


#14

Your domain is still blocking Twitterbot as far as I can see (403 error on fetch) - so it is unable to read the metadata (regardless of the image location). FWIW I think that image URL is just fine.


#15

Hi Andy

Thanks for your quick reply.

OK, so it’s not enough that I warehouse the image on Flickr. I’ve basically got to find a new host for the entire site. One that doesn’t block the Twitter bot?

When I preview the card in the the Card Validator the Title and description are fine. It’s just the image that is missing. Is that because the the Title & Description are cached for longer than the image?

best regards

Andy


#16

Yeah, that would be the case here. Sorry - I think I misunderstood or didn’t pay enough attention during the earlier part of the thread to reconnect the dots later!


#17

OK, that’s a bit of a bummer.
But thanks for your help.


#18

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