Is your Twitter client using basic user name and password authentication? If that’s the case, it will stop working on June 30, 2010 — the countdown has begun (nice retro JavaScript animation, incidentally!)

Basic authentication will be switched off in the Twitter API and OAuth will be the only option from that date. Fortunately, there are several benefits to using OAuth:

  • you don’t need to worry about storing or accidentally revealing credentials
  • user password changes are handled automatically
  • there are many other applications which also use OAuth
  • there is plenty of documentation and code examples.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter whether you’re convinced or not: the OAuth change must be implemented or your Twitter API calls will fail.

There’s no need to panic if you’ve not used OAuth before. Twitter’s developer documentation provides several good resources:

I suspect the change will keep many developers busy during the next few weeks. Will it affect your application?

Tags: api, oauth, twitter
Craig is a freelance UK web consultant who built his first page for IE2.0 in 1995. Since that time he's been advocating standards, accessibility, and best-practice HTML5 techniques. He's written more than 1,000 articles for SitePoint and you can find him @craigbuckler

  • Tyssen

    Does this also affect scripts that display a certain user’s stream on a website?

    • Craig Buckler

      Possibly. It’ll depend how it’s being done, although most websites and widgets should be using OAuth already. I suspect it’s desktop and mobile applications which have the biggest problem.

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