After the microblogging platform Twitter suffered a major global outage on Saturday night, Twitter owner Elon Musk said Twitter is limiting the number of tweets per day that different accounts can read, to discourage “extreme levels of data scraping and system manipulation.”
According to Musk, verified accounts on Twitter were initially allowed to read up to 6,000 posts per day, while unauthenticated accounts had a limit of 600 posts per day and new unauthenticated accounts were limited to 300. However, these read limits were later adjusted to 10,000 posts per day for verified users, 1,000 posts per day for unauthenticated users, and 500 posts per day for new unauthenticated users, as Musk stated in a separate post without providing further details.
The reason I put a “view limit” is because we are all Twitter addicts and need to get out. I’m doing a good deed for the world here.
That’s also another view you just used.
— Elon Musk (parody) (@ElonMuskAOC) July 1, 2023
The decision to require users to have a Twitter account to view tweets was announced as a temporary emergency measure by Twitter, and Musk expressed support for the move. Musk had said that hundreds of organizations or more were scraping Twitter data “extremely aggressively”, affecting user experience.
This announcement came after Twitter was down for thousands of users on Saturday. Nearly 7,500 users on the social media platform reported problems accessing the app during the peak of the outage at around 8:47 p.m.
Earlier on Saturday, Twitter stopped browsing its web platform for people without an account. It was unclear if the latest outage was due to backend changes to make the earlier move.
Elon Musk said it was a temporary emergency measure. “We were looted so much that it was a degrading service to normal users. Almost every company doing AI, from startups to some of the largest companies in the world, was scraping massive amounts of data,” said the Twitter owner.
Musk had previously expressed his displeasure with artificial intelligence companies like OpenAI, the owner of ChatGPT, for using Twitter’s data to train their large language models.