NEW YORK (PIX11) – The MTA has resumed its real-time service alerts on Twitter after the social media company reversed its plan to charge more than $500,000 a year to do so, an agency official said Thursday.
MTA Acting Chief Customer Officer Shanifa Rieara said Twitter “got the message and reversed its plan” after the MTA said it wouldn’t pay the fee to use Twitter’s application programming interface, also known as API. The API is what allows the MTA to send out its real-time service alerts on Twitter.
“The MTA also received written assurances from Twitter that reliability on the platform will be guaranteed through technological means, so riders can count on receiving messages posted on Twitter,” Rieara said in a statement.
Twitter announced earlier this year it would no longer offer free access to its API. The MTA ended its real-time service alerts on Twitter near the end of April after deciding not to pay to use the API.
Twitter’s API is commonly used by accounts for transit and weather agencies that post frequent alerts.
“One of the most important use cases for the Twitter API has always been public utility. Verified gov or publicly owned services who tweet weather alerts, transport updates and emergency notifications may use the API, for these critical purposes, for free,” the Twitter Dev account posted on Tuesday.
The MTA said it is glad Twitter committed to offering free API access for public service providers.
“We’ve made critical investments in digital products, such as our apps and station screens, to communicate with customers. But Twitter is a part of that toolkit,” the MTA said.