Why API Proxy?

As of August 31, 2010, all authenticated Twitter API requests now require OAuth.

Twitter supporting basic auth is probably one of the reasons it got so big since it let a multitude of developers develop for the platform since the barrier of entry is relatively low.


It is very easy to find software and libraries that can perform simple HTTP operations with HTTP Basic Authentication. It is not so easy to find implementations that can perform OAuth - and in some cases it is impossible. These applications are those that benefit from the API service.

Doing a few quick searches, we found the following examples of real applications that tweet using the Twitter API that won't work after the OAuth cut-over:

There are many, many more. Twitter considers these "corner cases" - this makes sense given that they process billions of requests per day. These may be corner cases, but they are real apps that people use in real life to get real benefits from the Twitter service. And so, while we can appreciate why Twitter has to abandon support for these types of applications, we also think it makes sense to provide a means for such legitimate and useful applications of Twitter to continue and that's where comes in.

What do sneakers, a cemetery, an electricity meter and a toilet have in common? They're all tweeting. A growing list of stuff is a-Twitter -- and people are actually following the feeds.

      - Things That Tweet

Below are a few real applications that are already using the API Proxy:

Plus there are countless scripts that use cURL to post status updates. Converting these to use OAuth is a major project in most cases. Converting them to use the API is often as simple as a one-line change.

For a list of some featured accounts posting via the Proxy API, check out the SuperTweeters list on Twitter.

Nothing beats if all you wanna do is post from cURL.

      - James Scholes

When not to use API Proxy solves a problem for microcontroller environments and other situations where direct OAuth implementation is impractical or impossible. It is also handy for tweeting from your own simple scripts and other such applications, using your own Twitter ID. It is not applicable to websites, Twitter clients, or other applications that make Twitter API calls on behalf of users other than the developer of those applications. In other words, if you didn't write the application or script for your own purposes, then is not the right answer. Instead those applications should bite the bullet and build OAuth into the app. If you need help doing that, I'm available for consulting to help you out: Contact Me. You may also prefer to use the open-source stand-alone version of the Supertweet proxy on your own system in these situations to remove any dependency on the service.

The API Proxy is also NOT FOR SPAMMING. See terms of use.

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