Nothing is more fascinating than the tech platform API wars because they are so, so similar to high school. Once a company feels it’s too cool for another company, it starts shutting off parts of its API to that company, like what happened here with Facebook and Google. It’s basically one of those big, swinging dick types of things, that I, as a female, entirely understand.
Twitter’s move is completely about growth and engagement. Twitter currently has over 500 million users, LinkedIn, a modest 150 million. Facebook, which is at almost a billion users, is clearly bigger than Twitter — So allowing tweet syndication there helps more non-Twitter users discover the service, sign up, and increase Twitter’s growth.
So for the moment I can still post to Facebook from Twitter, most likely because someone over there at Twitter HQ made the assumption that most of LinkedIn’s highly monetizable usership is already on Twitter. It wants those people reading tweets on its website where it shows ads, not on LinkedIn, whereas Facebook has another a half a billion users or so of potential lead generation, so “delivering a consistent Twitter experience” becomes less important.
As Twitter transitions into monetization mode, keeping people on the site where it shows ads is important, so I wouldn’t be surprised if Tumblr’s access suddenly gets revoked. Welcome to the latest phase of API Darwinism.