Twitter wants to court back developers with Fabric
If you're a developer of applications which use Twitter's API, you'll be aware of the ecosystem crackdown which Andreessen Horowitz partner Chris Dixon said at the time was like “a drunk guy with an Uzi.”
Twitter is like a drunk guy with an uzi killing partners left and right. Expect investment in ecosystem to drop significantly.— Chris Dixon (@cdixon) May 24, 2010
Dixon wasn't wrong, either. The "token limit" imposed by Twitter was the death of many beloved clients for the social network; such as Falcon Pro for Android, and Tweetro on Windows. Twitter destroyed its reputation with the developers who helped build the service to what it is today, and now the social network wants to get them back.
Twitter is wanting to court developers back to help build a new platform called 'Fabric' which - instead of restoring unrestricted access to the service - will provide tools for developers so users can sign-up for their apps more easily, sell ads, and view analytics.
It could be a more attractive proposition than a social network which has gained a reputation of using developers when needed.
In other words, Twitter wants your help to battle Facebook as the center of online identity and help to spawn an advertising platform which has further reach than just the promoted tweets the company implemented four years ago in users' timelines.
But will developers want to return? There is another social network which has got a lot of interest this past week called 'Ello' which promises to be more considerate of its users and not sell data for advertising purposes. People have been joining in their masses, with 45,000 new users being added every hour despite the service still being invite-only.
If Ello can have a similar fair approach to developers, it could be a more attractive proposition than a social network which has gained a reputation of using them when needed and dropping developers when their relationship becomes most fruitful.
Back in 2011, things were looking good for Twitter and developers with an event called 'Chirp' being hosted by Twitter which was designed to be like Facebook's F8 events and an open invitation to partner-up with the company's apps and services.
… We're still feeling a little heart-broken about how that turned out.
Will you return to help Twitter build their new platform? Let us know in the comments.
(Image Credit: Andreas Eldh)