Fail Limit Exceeded

Why Twitter’s latest “rate limit” blunder may be their white whale

Cheryl Platz
Ideaplatz

--

It’s no secret that Twitter has been in decline for months. The will-he-won’t-he-destroy-the-network drama has spawned an entire ecosystem of wobbly social media upstarts trying to fill in the vacuum left behind. And even still, Twitter soldiered on. I found it difficult to quit entirely, because there were still valuable and important conversations and voices there I couldn’t get anywhere else.

But today was different.

Today, many Twitter users started to hit an error during their morning scrolls. “Rate limit exceeded — please wait a few moments then try again.”

The problem is that waiting a few moments won’t fix the problem.

If you’d had the “good fortune” to see Twitter CEO Elon Musk’s Tweet today announcing a major feature update (behavior which he has, in the past, promised to stop) you would have seen this:

“To address extreme levels of data scraping & system manipulation, we’ve applied the following temporary limits: — Verified accounts are limited to reading 6000 posts/day — Unverified accounts to 600 posts/day — New unverified accounts to 300/day” — @ElonMusk on Twitter, 10:01 AM July 1 2023

They have now “temporarily” limited Twitter Blue users to 8000 post reads a day and all other users 800 post reads a day, based on an update a few hours later. No word on why the change or that specific number…

--

--

Cheryl Platz
Ideaplatz

Designer, actress, teacher, speaker, writer, gamer. Author of Design Beyond Devices. Founder of Ideaplatz, LLC. Director of UX, Player Platform @ Riot Games.