RIP: Twitterrific

I joined Twitter in August of 2008. It was still pretty new then. There were no ads that I can remember at that time. I recall a Twitter app but it was very lacking. Hence the introduction of the clients. My preference at the time was Echofon. Soon, Twitterrific caught my attention and for a few years I would use both – whichever I was in the mood to use. Eventually, Twitterrific won out and became my sole way of tweeting with exception to auto posts from other applications.

Back then Twitter was still trying to find a way to make revenue off their service. Advertisements seemed the way to go rather than charge a fee. Just like other social media services. That’s where these 3rd party Twitter clients really shined for us users. There were no ads. They successfully filtered them out and only brought us the content we wanted out of Twitter.

We all want our favorite social media outlets to be successful and to… live. That is, we want them to be around today and tomorrow. That can only be accomplished through revenue when controlled by a single entity. That is where I was conflicted. While I do hate ads and certainly enjoyed the ad-free environment provided by Twitterrific, I also need Twitter to be financially successful. I aint gonna lie. I was very surprised that Twitter allowed these 3rd party clients to exist when the same 3rd party clients allowed us users a reliable way to circumvent the very revenue process that brought us the service we were using. Crazy, right? But hey – they allowed it. Of course I was going to take advantage of it. I figured Twitter owed these clients in part, if not whole, for their very existence in the first place; so they turned a blind to this usurpation.

When Megalomaniac Musk bought and took charge of Twitter, I said to myself, “Self, this dude is all about the coin. The first thing he will do is cut off all these 3rd party clients that are robbing him of his revenue.” But no. That’s not what this fool did. He ran the company into the ground as if he was pissed. Pissed that he changed his mind on buying the platform, but the company he no longer wanted was actually suing him to coerce him into buying. So fine. Buy it. Run the bitch into the ground. Fine, you want me to buy you? I will. And then I’ll make you wish you didn’t. That’s what I think is going on. Or at least was.

Now that his errant actions are reaching into the other realms of his life, he has to change course. He has to find a way to make money. Especially since his initial actions caused Twitter’s top 30 advertisement companies to drop their spending by 42%, according to Reuters, and is being sued for rent. The most effective way to take advantage of revenue is by banning 3rd party clients. Perhaps there could be some way to charge 3rd parties for a license which would then be passed along to that 3rd parties customer base.

Even though I hold Musk in very low regard (like he cares), this is the one thing I can’t really hold against him. I can say he did it the most dickish way possible. No warning. Immediate cut off. Certainly could have been handled in a more courteous way. It really sucks for small companies like The Iconfactory.

From the Iconfactory’s good bye blog post, they add “Finally, if you were subscriber to Twitterrific for iOS, we would ask you to please consider not requesting a refund from Apple. The loss of ongoing, recurring revenue from Twitterrific is already going to hurt our business significantly, and any refunds will come directly out of our pockets – not Twitter’s and not Apple’s. To put it simply, thousands of refunds would be devastating to a small company like ours.”

Absolutely. Absorbing a $10 hit collectively as the customer base is a much more appealing consequence than The Iconfactory having to shell out en mass. I’d call it “Reverse Crowdfunding.” Mine just renewed January 3rd and shows that it will renew again January 3rd 2024. I most definitely will not be asking for a refund. Just this alone could be enough to eradicate this small business, let’s not compound it by everyone trying to get a refund for something as small as $10. Maybe someone could start a class action lawsuit to collect that refund from Twitter. I’d join.