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    Elon Musk Imposes Strict Twitter ‘Rate Limit’ Curbs On Users

    Elon Musk on Saturday imposed severe Twitter rate limits, restricting how many tweets that users can view in a day.


    The Tesla (TSLA) CEO, who paid $44 billion for Twitter last year, said he imposed “temporary limits” due to “extreme levels of data scraping and system manipulation.”

    What Does Twitter ‘Rate Limit’ Mean?

    Twitter users getting this message have reached the limit on how many tweets that can read or scroll past.

    Initially, Musk said that verified accounts could read 6,000 posts per day, while unverified accounts could read 600 posts daily and new unverified accounts just 300. On Saturday afternoon, Musk said the rate limits would climb to 8,000 posts per day for verified accounts, 800 for unverified accounts and 400 for new unverified accounts.

    Musk has not indicated when the limits may end.

    The restrictions triggered significant frustration and surprise among Twitter users. They suddenly got messages such as “Rate limit exceeded” or “Something went wrong. Try reloading.”

    It doesn’t long to reach rate limits when scrolling through tweets and replies, even for verified users. Users are able to tweet themselves, often complaining about the new restrictions, but other users may not be able to read those posts.

    On Friday, Elon Musk said artificial intelligence firms are scraping the site for data to train chatbots for free. “Almost every company doing AI, from startups to some of the biggest corporations on Earth, was scraping vast amounts of data,” he tweeted Friday.

    Twitter has significantly hiked prices for its application programming interface, or API, that lets third parties analyze some Twitter data and build tools with it.

    Since taking over Twitter last fall, Musk has slashed staff to cut costs but seen advertising revenue plummet. He’s tried to boost subscription revenue, but $8-a-month Twitter Blue sign-ups are nowhere close to making up the gap in ad sales.

    Elon Musk recently named Linda Yaccarino as Twitter CEO. She had been head of ad sales for NBC Universal.

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    Can You Get Around The Twitter Rate Limit?

    Certain services, such as Tweet Deck and Hootsuite, offer a way to sidestep the Twitter rate limits for now. Such services let users create various columns for their Twitter timelines (and often other social sites), as well as lists, direct messages, notifications and keyword search.

    Please follow Ed Carson on Twitter at @IBD_ECarson for stock market updates and more.


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