Twitter points finger at Microsoft for data abuse


  • Twitter, under the ownership of Elon Musk, has accused Microsoft of unauthorized data use, breaching the provisions of their data usage agreement.
  • The issue arose after Microsoft reportedly declined to pay for continued access to the social media’s API, which had been previously free for certain developers and researchers but is now charged.
  • Alex Spiro suggests in a letter to Microsoft that some of its products, including Azure cloud and Bing, have excessively used Twitter’s API, potentially bypassing throttling limits.

In an unexpected turn of events, Twitter, the popular social media platform, has accused software giant Microsoft of alleged misuse of its data.

The charge, spearheaded by Alex Spiro, a partner at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan and legal representative for the company’s owner Elon Musk, suggests that Microsoft’s actions might have crossed the boundaries set by their data usage agreement.

Accusations amidst growing data ownership debates

Twitter’s acquisition by Musk in October stirred the digital space, particularly when he opted for the CEO role and initiated charges for using Twitter’s application programming interface (API).

Prior to this, Twitter’s API, an essential tool enabling developers to incorporate tweets into their software and access Twitter data, was accessible to certain researchers, partners, and developers free of charge, provided they complied with the social media giant’s terms.

Prominent names such as Hootsuite, Sprout Social, and Sprinklr are among the companies whose services have been shaped by the Twitter API.

However, the tides seem to have turned last month when Microsoft, according to Spiro’s letter to Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella, chose not to pay even a discounted rate for Twitter’s API and content access.

This move has brought to light a list of products under the Microsoft umbrella – such as Azure cloud, Bing search engine, and Power Platform application development tools – all of which have allegedly leveraged the API.

Spiro’s letter brings attention to a potential violation of the agreement terms, pointing out that Microsoft’s service usage clearly intends to bypass throttling limits, thereby contravening the agreement’s clause on excessive usage of Twitter’s programming interfaces.

Microsoft has acknowledged the receipt of the letter, expressing its intent to review it and respond accordingly. A Microsoft spokesperson stated, “We look forward to continuing our long-term partnership with the company.”

Could Twitter also be hinting at Microsoft and OpenAI’s relationship

Twitter’s allegation against Microsoft comes amidst Musk’s criticism of Microsoft’s involvement with OpenAI, the AI organization that birthed ChatGPT.

Musk, an early supporter of OpenAI, has raised concerns about Microsoft’s influence over the AI company after significant investments from the latter.

Musk claimed, in an interview earlier this week, that Microsoft now heavily influences, if not outright controls, OpenAI. Nadella, however, has countered this claim, emphasizing Microsoft’s noncontrolling interest in the AI startup.

While the current tension revolves around Twitter’s data usage, the larger question of token pooling — a process where multiple API tokens are used collectively to bypass rate limits — remains unaddressed in Spiro’s letter.

This lack of clarity could lead to future discussions and potential altercations between the tech giants.

Recent public court filings have revealed an interaction between Musk and Nadella, where Musk sought out Nadella during his fundraising for Twitter’s buyout.

This interaction highlights the complexity of the relationship between the two, setting the stage for more intriguing developments in the tech world.

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

Share link:

Jai Hamid

Jai Hamid is a passionate writer with a keen interest in blockchain technology, the global economy, and literature. She dedicates most of her time to exploring the transformative potential of crypto and the dynamics of worldwide economic trends.

Most read

Loading Most Read articles...

Stay on top of crypto news, get daily updates in your inbox

Related News

Subscribe to CryptoPolitan