Twitter locks out users without account … Nitter also down

[German]Unpleasant surprise of a special kind by Twitter. As of June 30, 2023, users who do not have an account with Twitter will no longer be able to access content on the short messaging service. They will be redirected to a registration page.


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It has "hit me cold", as I frequently use Twitter as a news source here on the blog. For European GDPR reasons, I have admittedly chosen a special solution for quite some time: A screenshot of the tweet (or tweets) in question is embedded in the blog, which I then link to the tweet.

With this solution, I was GDPR compliant and users could view the content of the tweets via the screenshot without having to go to the platform. Since I also link to the original articles of the tweets, there was usually no need to go to Twitter. Interested readers, however, had the possibility to view the original tweets including comments or further follow-up tweets even without a Twitter account. The annoying hints to register could be ignored.

Twitter blocks users without accounts

That model is now over. There was already yesterday here in the blog this German comment from Bernie (thanks for that) that tweets without Twitter account would no longer be readable:

Small side note: Access to the tweet linked in the blog article is no longer possible without a Twitter account.
See also article by Deskmodder "Twitter macht die Schotten dicht – für diejenigen ohne Account".

I guess this has been implemented on June 30, 2023 – but I couldn't react earlier, as I had taken a "time out" for the week to go hiking at the Mosel river in German and only visited the blog once in the morning or evening. In the meantime, many websites (see also Mastodon post above) report that Twitter access is blocked without an account.


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If you follow a link on Twitter, you will land on the login page shown in the screenshot above. In order to search or view tweets, user profiles and comment threads on the web, you now need a Twitter account, under which you must be logged in.

Twitter had m.W. not commented on this, only later yesterday, Friday, Elon Musk tweeted , that the change was a "temporary emergency measure". The Verge has picked up Musk's statement here, where Elon Musk responded to a tweet from, Tim Sweeney, CEO of Epic Games. Sweeny complained about how payment systems and account walls are destroying the Internet (see the following screenshot).

Sweeny versus Musk

Musk claims that several hundred organizations (perhaps more) have been extremely aggressive in tapping Twitter data to the point where it has affected the actual user experience. Musk doesn't provide details. I'll leave it at that, but this is the foot Musk shot himself in. With an extremely thinned out team and the actions so far since Nov. 2022, Twitter's decline is already noticeable in individual places (see also the comments at The Versge – my auto-posts of blog posts via plugin have also died in the meantime). Mashable reports here that developers paying for the API are complaining about bugs and broken features – Musk is successfully mining Twitter.

eTo me, this means: More paradigm shifts. While I will continue to use Twitter as a source of information and also post select tweets on blog posts for my Twitter followers. But linking to Twitter I'll spare myself in the future – thus I'm simply dried up as a "source for Twitter visitors" (who could then be shown ads on Twitter) (ok, I realize I'm a very small cog – but if many websites handle it that way in the future, it will be felt). I've been more active on Mastodon for a while now anyway, but only have half the followers there.

Nitter is also dead

There was immediately the hint (also in the comment above), you could use the platform Nitter. But I have had linked to Nitter some time ago, bit that went downhill, because the Nitter links has been broken after a while.

Colleague Martin Brinkmann also had an article on ghacks.net yesterday about how to get around the Twitter blockade with Nitter. But a quick check yesterday evening showed me that Nitter can't display anything anymore. This is also reported by other websites in the meantime (see also the following screenshot).

Nitter down (July 1, 2023)

Whether it's just an overload, I don't know (I suspect nitter was blocked just like other sites). I don't care, the experiences in the past showed me that this is not a reliable solution to maintain links in blogs for years – so get rid of it.

Currently, I guess the only option is to create an account, possibly as a zombie, on Twitter if you want to research tweets there. How I handle it in the blog, I have outlined above. If you don't have a Twitter account, you won't need an account on Twitter for blog posts in the future (I do the same with Facebook, where I haven't linked anything for years – they're often closed Facebook groups – where I get the information).


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