Details are still very murky, but Twitter has revoked access for two third party Twitter clients owned by UberMedia, UberTwitter and Twidroyd.
Twitter’s explanation is posted here, and states that the clients have been suspended due to policy violations. The post goes on to explain that Twitter suspends hundreds of 3rd party applications daily, but posted about this suspension because it would effect a much larger set of users.
Techcrunch posted a response from a Twitter spokesperson that specifically stated:
These violations include, but aren’t limited to, a privacy issue with private Direct Messages longer than 140 characters, trademark infringement, and changing the content of users’ Tweets in order to make money.
I’m personally pretty big on hearing both sides of a story before making a judgement, but privacy issues on direct messages is a very big issue to me, and changing the content of a user’s tweet is abominable. It certainly makes me nervous about using any of UberMedia’s other products until things are cleared up.
In the past I have felt that Twitter encouraged the third party clients. For a long time they didn’t offer any third party clients, and one would see Twitter employees using some of the third party tools. However, it now seems that the company is beginning to take their own tools more seriously, as we saw with Tweetie being brought into Twitter, huge improvements to the web interface, and the end of this post about UberMedia pointing to official Twitter clients.
It has only been a couple of years since Twitter was a tiny social network used by some geeks and hipsters. But the company has become one of the most important players in “new media” and has had to scale at an unbelievable pace. One can only expect things will get more interesting.