Like the Energizer Bunny, TweetDeck keeps loading and loading and loading…
TweetDeck, a Twitter owned and operated social media dashboard application that’s useful for managing multiple Twitter accounts, has been unusable since early Sunday morning. While TweetDeck hasn’t had a major failure that I know of since Elon Musk took ownership of Twitter, this failure came as no surprise to me — or anyone else using the platform, I imagine.
The application allows users to create multiple columns to monitor multiple accounts, alongside a “Home” feed for the user’s designated primary account. For example, my TweetDeck account shows the “home” feed for BrideOfLinux, my personal Twitter account, along with columns showing my most recent tweets, and another column, “Notifications,” which shows interactions from other users, such as shares, likes, and comments. Alongside those, there’s a column showing tweets posted on FOSS Force’s Twitter account, which I manage, and a “Notification” column for that account, as well.
When it’s working properly, I can not only use TweetDeck to keep an eye on both my personal and the FOSS Force accounts; I can compose and send tweets on either account, as well as share tweets from one account to another using the same “pane of glass.”
During this outage, however, the home feed continues to load and display normally. The other columns, however, never load. There’s just the word “loading,” alongside an ever spinning circle indicating that loading is in progress. According to the website Downdetector, the issue started at about 1 am on Sunday.
Twitter’s Problem of the Day After Day
Sunday’s TweetDeck issue (which continues to be ongoing as this article goes to press on Monday morning) is the third major issue that Twitter users have faced in as many days.
On Friday, visitors to Twitter’s site were denied access unless they were logged in. Musk said that the move was because “Several hundred organizations (maybe more) were scraping Twitter data extremely aggressively, to the point where it was affecting the real user experience.”
Then on Saturday, some logged-in Twitter users began to complain that they were receiving a “rate limit exceeded” message when they tried to view tweets. This was followed by an announcement from Twitter that unverified accounts, that means accounts that aren’t ponying up $8 a month for Twitter Blue, will only be able to see 600 posts per day, and that “new” unverified accounts would only be able to see 300 in a day. Musk claimed that these limits were also due to bots and stuff scraping the platform.
Musk’s cited reasons for both Friday’s and Saturday’s issues might be
lies just a way of covering up yet another failure in Musk’s management of Twitter. The truth might be that once again Musk has cut too many corners and spread the site’s infrastructure too thin.
On June 10, the tech news site Platformer reported that Musk has been withholding payments to both Google Cloud Platform and Amazon Web Services, cloud companies that host a large part of Twitter’s infrastructure. In addition, according to Forbes, Twitter’s contract with GCP ended on June 30, which was Friday, the day that Twitter’s latest round of service woes began.
Back in December, you might remember, Downdetector said that it received around 10,000 Twitter outage reports shortly after Musk pulled the plug on a Sacremento, California-based data center that Twitter operated as part of it’s infrastructure. In Musk’s world, I think, history often repeats itself.
Up until last year, TweetDeck was an important part of my social media strategy. Not so much anymore. Under Musk’s ownership, Twitter has gone from being my top social media priority to being something that I only keep up out of habit. Most of my time these days is spent on Mastodon, which is a more fitting place for an open-source advocate to hang out.