Twitter is cracking down on client applications that replicate the company’s basic user functionality. Platform Chief Ryan Sarver addressed the issue in an official Twitter online discussion forum for developers. “Developers have told us that they'd like more guidance from us about the best opportunities to build on Twitter. More specifically, developers ask us if they should build client apps that mimic or reproduce the mainstream Twitter consumer client experience. The answer is no,” Sarver wrote in a post, adding, “If you are an existing developer of client apps, you can continue to serve your user base, but we will be holding you to high standards to ensure you do not violate users' privacy, that you provide consistency in the user experience, and that you rigorously adhere to all areas of our Terms of Service.”

Examples of third-party applications include TweetDeck, Seesmic and HootSuite. Twitter is citing security concerns and user confusion for the change.

“If there are too many ways to use Twitter that are inconsistent with one another, we risk diffusing the user experience. In addition, a number of client applications have repeatedly violated Twitter's Terms of Service, including our user privacy policy. This demonstrates the risks associated with outsourcing the Twitter user experience to third parties,” Sarver wrote.

Twitter also updated its developer terms, which provides more details and can be found at

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