Public Safety Notification Accounts Are Being Limited by Twitter’s New API Policies

Matt Binder, Mashable:

Numerous public service Twitter accounts have lost their ability to automatically post breaking news and events. Twitter has been removing API access, which allows many of these accounts to post in an authorized way by the platform, as it switches to Musk’s new high-priced paid API system.

Many of these affected Twitter accounts have automated updates, but aren’t the type of hands-off bot accounts that some may think of when they hear the term “bot.”

For example, numerous National Weather Service accounts that provide consistent updates, both automated and manually posted by humans, shared that they could no longer provide their up-to-the-minute, potentially life-saving updates.

These accounts are regional so users can follow the alerts most relevant to them. That means the National Weather Service operates hundreds of largely automated accounts. At $1,200 per year for basic API access, it very quickly becomes cheaper to hire people and pay them a healthy salary and benefits to manually tweet from these accounts. By some miracle, Twitter’s new management has found a way to reverse the ever-increasing threat of automation eliminating jobs.

By the way, Twitter finally canned the method I use for automatically posting. I have a fresh free API 2.0 key and am investigating a replacement posting method, but we should assume Twitter has little interest in being a stable long-term product. I recommend following the site directly through its JSON Feed, RSS, or on Mastodon.