Twitter announced on Tuesday that it will make its API available for free to accounts that post public announcements such as weather alerts, transportation information, and emergency warnings.
According to the company, verified government or publicly owned services that post about public utility alerts will be eligible for free API usage.
Last month, the social network announced new API pricing tiers. It set a monthly limit of 1,500 tweets for free API tier users and a monthly limit of 3,000 tweets for $100 basic tier users. These constraints were insufficient for public service announcement accounts.
As a result, the National Weather Service (NWS) account tweeted last month that it had been limited in its ability to post automated tweets. New York’s Metro Transit Service (MTS) also announced that it will discontinue its public alert system on Twitter, which was run through various accounts.
The change in API pricing has had a significant impact on a number of tools. Microsoft removed Twitter from its social media sharing tool for advertisers in April. Flipboard also announced that its Twitter integration had stopped working.
WordPress announced last week that users will no longer be able to automatically share their posts to Twitter via the Jetpack Social product.
While Elon Musk and the company have made API usage free for certain government-run services, the future of disaster management accounts that relied on Twitter to manage the situation is unclear.