Twitter Policy around Media retrieval




When utilising the API in order to retrieve a followers’ Twitter feed, are we also able to retrieve the profile picture? I assume this is frowned upon / against TOS due to the bandwidth impact but would be interested to know. I assume the same also applies to the images on our Twitter feed?



From a performance perspective we’d certainly recommend caching user images, but there’s no reason not to do a regular HTTP fetch on them when the URLs are available in the Tweet and User objects.


HI Andy, That is very useful to know. Thanks. I must say I am surprised that that is not considered ‘web scraping’ as it would seem to be outside the scope of the listed APIs. It is good news that it would seem that sensible, reasonable and cached requests are not something that Twitter stops us from achieving. Thanks again.


This is not “web scraping” as you’re getting the user object from the Twitter API, and that’s serving you back an HTTPS URL for retrieving the user profile photos. If you are programmatically pulling the web pages for each user and then grabbing the user images, that’s not OK, as scraping of the Twitter web UI is explicitly disallowed by the policy. Thanks.