A new leak has claimed that the popular Twitter dashboard tool TweetDeck will soon be placed behind the Twitter Blue payment wall, with access cut off for users who don’t cough for the premium service.
The leak comes from a Twitter user @512×512 (opens in a new tab), a coder reverse-engineering the mechanics of Elon Musk’s “Twitter 2.0”. Specifically, the user was able to locate a line of text in TweetDeck’s website code that read “Welcome to TweetDeck, a feature of Twitter Blue.”
BREAKING: Tweetdeck will soon be exclusive to Twitter Blue. pic.twitter.com/EmIU5kz0lcFebruary 8, 2023
People (myself included) are understandably angry about this; TweetDeck is an extremely popular application for many Twitter users, especially those who manage business or brand accounts. Since being released by a third party in 2008 and purchased by Twitter for $40 million in 2011, it has consistently ranked among the most used Twitter clients outside of the main app.
According @TitterTakeoveran account that posts news related to the social media platform, a newly revamped version of TweetDeck will soon be available, most likely locked behind Twitter Blue’s “ad-free” subscription tier.
Elon, why do you have to hurt us like this?
Of course, it’s worth noting that when Tesla boss Elon Musk took over Twitter last year, he fired a ridiculous number of people, including, oddly enough, the entire team of software engineers responsible for to maintain and improve TweetDeck. As such, I’m not too hopeful that this “new and improved” TweetDeck will be really great.
Even if it turns out to be an even better version of the tool I know and love, putting it behind a paywall is just a colossal move on Musk’s Twitter side and I’m on board furious. TweetDeck is a vital tool for many people who use Twitter to support their professional endeavors, and locking it down unless we pay for Blue is an incredibly frustrating decision.
Of course, this is an unconfirmed leak at this time, so take it with a grain of salt – it’s possible Musk will see the backlash here and reverse that decision. This seems even more plausible given that he recently backtracked on charge users for access to the Twitter API.
Unfortunately, this is only the latest in a series of Blunders on Twitter for the South African businessman, a list that seems endless (and on… and on… and on.) More recently, a widespread outage caused by “multiple internal and external issues” prevented most users from tweeting or even access Twitter at all. It’s fair to say that all hasn’t been great since Musk took over the platform.
If Elon goes ahead and puts TweetDeck behind a paywall, I’m sure some users will rush for the ad-free Blue subscription to retain access. But to me, Twitter is starting to look like a fast sinking ship, and it’s yet another leak filling the lower decks with water. Many more users are likely to reject the change on principle, and my prediction is that if it continues, it will drive even more people away from Elon’s social media hell site.
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