News broke late Friday night that Twitter made a significant move towards bolstering its own big data business by cutting off firehose access to third parties.
Twitter’s ‘firehose’ refers to the raw, unfiltered stream of tweets and all related metadata. An announcement from Twitter’s data analytics team states that previous agreements with third party resellers of firehose data will be terminated.
Twitter’s own data analytics team, Gnip, was once a third party reseller before being acquired in 2014. The acquisition was made in an effort to build direct relationships with people who use Twitter’s Data.
“The next step in working directly with data customers is to transition everyone receiving raw data for commercial use from other data resellers to a direct relationship with Twitter.
After that transition is completed, companies using raw Twitter data for commercial use – to build products, to analyze internally, and to serve other commercial purposes – will need to have a direct relationship with Twitter.”
One third party reseller tells TechCrunch that Twitter did not give any notice that they were about to be cut off. CEO of DataSift, leading third party reseller, says he was “blindsided” by the news. In fact, there had even been recent discussions to renew the deal.
Now it’s clear that Twitter’s deals with third parties will not be renewed, and the company’s priority is building up its own big data business going forward.
Firehose access will officially be cut off on August 13th, at which point customers of third party data resellers are encouraged to migrate to Twitter’s Commercial APIs through the Gnip product suite, or to the Public API.