WordPress Creates a Twitter Compatible API

Matthew Casperson, December 16th, 2009

TwitterWordPress this week opened a new web service that allows blogs to be read and posted via a Twitter compatible API. From the announcement on the WordPress blog:

Of course one of the coolest things about Twitter right now is the client applications, particularly the mobile/iPhone ones. I use Tweetie 2 on my iPhone every day. Wouldn’t it be cool if you could get all your blog subscriptions and post to your WordPress.com blog from apps like Tweetie? Well here’s an early Christmas present… We’ve enabled posting to and reading of WordPress.com blogs via the Twitter API. Any app that allows you to set a custom API URL will work.

By creating a custom implementation of the Twitter API, WordPress can now leverage the developer community’s expertise and familiarity with the Twitter web service. In addition, most existing applications that target the Twitter platform can now integrate with WordPress just by changing the base URL of the web service calls, either with a very simple modification of the code, or by specifying the API root or end point in those applications that have that option, like Tweetie 2.


This new service is not intended to compete with Twitter, but rather to complement the WordPress “mega-blogging” platform with Twitters “micro-blogging”, as Matt Mullenweg, the founder of WordPress, explains:

New forms of social media, including micro-blogging, are complementary to blogging.

One of the many uses of Twitter is to link to and promote your blog posts. (And other people’s blog posts.) As we grow, so do they, and vice versa. I blog when I have something longer to say, like this. I tweet when it’s the lowest friction way to talk to my friends, or get distribution for something longer I did somewhere else.

It’s not really a “versus,” it’s an “and.”

Custom implementations of existing APIs are nothing new – Wine has been providing the Windows API on Linux for years. However, it does raise some interesting legal issues. Can an external API use the trademarked names, like Twitter and ReTweet, as a function name? Is it possible to reprint the existing documentation? Currently the Twitter Terms Of Service does not deal with these situations, although there is an interesting discussion on Google Groups that could address some of these questions.

With new APIs being created on an almost daily basis, developers will certainly appreciate not having to learn yet another API when targeting the WordPress platform. This move could also mark the beginning of the Twitter API as a de facto standard in micro-blogging.

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6 Responses to “WordPress Creates a Twitter Compatible API”

January 4th, 2010
at 4:52 am
Comment by: Dr. Altaf

Very interesting! But more tios required how API could help bring traffic from all sources through Twitter. Even money is needed fro the traffic.

March 22nd, 2010
at 2:25 am
Comment by: Twitter to Introduce Versioning to Their API

[...] Twitter API continues to see incredible growth and adoption, including Wordpress and Tumblr both emulating the API, in turn providing access to their services through standard [...]

May 4th, 2010
at 2:01 am
Comment by: Has Adoption of the Twitter API as a Standard Stalled?

[...] a few months ago speculation was rife about the adoption of the Twitter API as a de-facto standard for micro-blogging services. [...]

May 10th, 2010
at 3:07 am
Comment by: Internet Archive Releases Amazon S3 Like API

[...] with other providers who have adopted (or not) the syntax of another vendor’s API, here is a new example of how building on the [...]

December 15th, 2011
at 12:34 pm
Comment by: Hauskreditrechner

I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own weblog and was curious what all is needed to get set up? I’m assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very web savvy so I’m not 100% positive. Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated. Cheers Hauskreditrechner

November 18th, 2012
at 12:48 am
Comment by: Edmundo

There are some attention-grabbing time limits in this article but I don’t know if I see all of them heart to heart. There is some validity but I will take hold opinion until I look into it further. Good article , thanks and we want more! Added to FeedBurner as effectively

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