Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Twitter and developers - the reboot?

Last month I wrote a post that concluded as follows:

(And if you don't recall the link between [Robert] Scoble and [Jesse] Stay, read this piece regarding their discussion with Twitter back in 2008. As of 2011, Stay is more well-known as a Facebook technical expert than as a Twitter technical expert, so I guess that we can conclude that Twitter hasn't exactly enamored itself to developers.)

What I neglected to say (because it was off-topic for that particular post) was that Stay had subsequently shared some concerns about Twitter's relationship with its developers. In the April 2009 post I Should Have Heeded My Own Advice About Twitter, Stay shared his concerns about what was happening to his SocialToo product:

Today Twitter pulled the rug out from under its developers once more by, with absolutely no notice, announcing that (paraphrased, in my words) since their way was the right way, they were discouraging auto-following, and would only allow a user to follow 1,000 people per day. What Twitter neglected was that, while not many, myself and others were building business plans around the users that would need this. A little notice would have been helpful, but is very consistent with the way developers have been treated over the past year or more by Twitter. Yes, I’m a big boy and we’ll survive, but that’s besides the point. You can read more about what developers are experiencing over on LouisGray. Put lightly, I’m not happy.

Well, Stay (and others) shared this news from Twitter today.

The stormy relations between Twitter Inc. and the sprawling developer community that surrounds it may have taken a big turn for the better. Longtime developer relations manager at Google and Facebook Jason Costa announced on the Twitter developers email list today that he has joined Twitter as the company's Developer Relations Manager. "I'll be 100% focused on ensuring the best possible developer experience for those looking to build on the Twitter Platform," Costa wrote.

But Marshall Kirkpatrick, who authored the ReadWriteWeb post, had some misgivings:

Hiring a developer relations manager is a good step towards preserving the viability of the platform. Hopefully it's not too late.

We'll see. I'm waiting for the views of Jesse Stay and other developers.
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