Twitter does to Tumblr what it did to Instagram last month

Twitter Birds

A little less than a month ago, Twitter blocked API privileges for Instagram making it unable to allow users to find Twitter friends and add them. Now, Twitter has done pretty much the same thing with Tumblr.

The sign-up procedure of Tumblr normally includes a step that allows you to find friends on the service using Facebook, Gmail and Twitter. Now, the Twitter option has been removed.

What is Twitter thinking? What is the purpose behind not allowing people to integrate with other services so easily? Twitter has always been an easy way for people to share their own data; by signing up through Twitter and sharing user associations, joining and spreading other services has been simple. Twitter gains by allowing further sharing of their own platform and the relationships built on it by users and other services are able to embrace Twitter as sharing tool of their own content that their users share.

Twitter has not blocked incoming access. In other words, you can still share TO Twitter from Instagram and Tumblr, you just can’t pull your data INTO the other services.

This may come back to bite them. If services go the same way with Twitter that Apple initially took with Facebook (basically, if you’re not going to play nice with us we won’t play nice with you), then they’re going to start making large enemies. Twitter needs them as much as they need Twitter. Closing the garden is a mistake.

Here’s Tumblr’s response:

To our dismay, Twitter has restricted our users’ ability to “Find Twitter Friends” on Tumblr. Given our history of embracing their platform, this is especially upsetting. Our syndication feature is responsible for hundreds of millions of tweets, and we eagerly enabled Twitter Cards across 70 million blogs and 30 billion posts as one of Twitter’s first partners. While we’re delighted by the response to our integrations with Facebook and Gmail, we are truly disappointed by Twitter’s decision.

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“Twitter Birds” image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Written by Sal McCloskey

+Sal McCloskey is a tech blogger in Los Angeles who (sadly) falls into the stereotype associated with nerds. Yes, he's a Star Trek fan and writes about it on Uberly. His glasses are thick and his allergies are thicker. Despite all that, he's (somehow) married to a beautiful woman and has 4 kids. Find him on Twitter or Facebook,
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