Twitter Changes – In Response to Election Meddling and Spam

Twitter Changes to API

Twitter changes are in the works for their API

Are you using bots or automation to help manage your Twitter account?  Considering recent Twitter changes, Operation Reputation suggests you give Yoel Roth’s blog post a read and make adjustments where appropriate.   As the Manager of Trust & Safety at Twitter, Yoel  detailed how Twitter is cracking down on the functionality of their API, limiting the ability of social media users to perform coordinated actions across multiple accounts.  The goal of these changes is to eliminate election tampering activities as well as spam.

“One of the most common spam violations we see is the use of multiple accounts and the Twitter developer platform to attempt to artificially amplify or inflate the prominence of certain Tweets.”  Yoel Roth


Twitter gives guidelines to compliance while reducing Twitter spam and election tampering

While these capabilities can be used for compliant and legitimate activity, recent claims of election tampering and spamming have necessitated Twitter to take action.

“These changes are an important step in ensuring we stay ahead of malicious activity targeting the crucial conversations taking place on Twitter — including elections in the United States and around the world,”  Yoel Roth

Overview of new Twitter guidelines

Mr. Roth provided the following guidance to developers:

  1.  Do not allow your users (or yourself) to simultaneously post identical or substantially similar content to multiple accounts.
  2.  Do not allow your users (or yourself) to simultaneously perform actions such as Likes,   Retweets, or follows from multiple accounts.
  3.  The use of any form of automation (including scheduling) to post identical or substantially   similar content, or to perform actions such as Likes or Retweets, across many accounts that   have authorized your app (whether or not you created or directly control those accounts) is   not permitted.
  4.  While we continue to permit cross-posting outside information (such as weather alerts or   RSS feeds) to Twitter using automation, you should only post this content to one account   you control.
  5.  As a sole exception to this rule, applications that broadcast or share weather, emergency, or   other public service announcements of broad community interest (for example, earthquake   or tsunami alerts) are permitted to post this content across multiple accounts who have   authorized an app.

For greater detail, please see Twitter’s Developer Blog.  Twitter is stating a deadline for compliance of March 23, 2018.

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