When we launched TweetMeme in 2008, I never dreamed of how quickly our service would take off and the incredible reach it would have.
TweetMeme was built to curate and rank Twitter links and gained 10 million monthly users in just nine months. We were the first to create the iconic (green) retweet button that was installed on 500,000+ websites, with a peak serving of 1.5 billion daily retweet buttons.
We are now in the process of shuttering TweetMeme and I wanted to share the reasons behind this decision, along with next steps to guide you.
TweetMeme was the first website to show the true power of curating news from Twitter. For millions of users, it was a homepage that showed a truly democratized view of what was popular on the Internet. Many stories broke first on TweetMeme as we cared more about the virality of a story, rather than who was saying it. When the plane landed in the Hudson River in New York, TweetMeme was the first to break the news on its homepage.
Three years on and the consumer news market has moved on and our core business DataSift has now grown to over 10,000 users, offices in 4 cities, $14m in investment and an amazing ecosystem of applications built upon it. We will be sad to see TweetMeme go, but it is no longer competitive or cost effective for us to continue to keep the infrastructure going behind it.
We have done our absolute best to ensure that the shutdown of the free TweetMeme API is as easy as possible for everyone. The shutdown of the free API which allows anyone to look up retweet counts and resolve short links to full links, is already in effect. Here is the timeline for the remaining steps as we wind down TweetMeme:
Buttons and API
Today whitelisted API will be shutdown and all whitelisted users will lose access to the /url_info end-point.
It has been two years since Twitter launched their own button and as part of the final TweetMeme transition, the TweetMeme button will over the next 24 hours be switched over to the Twitter button (the ‘web’ TweetMeme button will immediately look like Twitter buttons). Please note that this will happen automatically and no action needs to be taken from your end.
A few other important notes:
- The Retweet Button will lose some functionality when transitioning to the Twitter Button. The parameters tweetmeme_alias, tweetmeme_service, tweetmeme_service_api and tweetmeme_space are deprecated.
- In certain situations we advised to manually install the TweetMeme button using an iFrame, unfortunately this button will no longer be operational and will not be converted to a Twitter button. Sites will need to replace the embed code with Twitter’s own.
- The Image Button used within RSS feeds is being dropped.
- The Follow Button is being dropped.
- Our WordPress plugin will be switched to only use the Twitter button. As such, we strongly encourage you to upgrade the WordPress plugin when prompted from your dashboard.
On the 1st October the TweetMeme website will be fully shut down.
Thanks for your support as a TweetMeme user – it’s been a great ride. To learn more about DataSift, I encourage you to visit datasift.com. I also welcome you to stay in touch by following me on Twitter @nik and tuning into our DataSift blog.