Twitter CEO Elon Musk announced on Saturday that the social media platform will be implementing limits on the number of tweets users can read. This decision comes as a response to the perceived “extreme” levels of system manipulation and data scraping occurring on the platform. Musk revealed that temporary limits have been put in place for different types of accounts.
Newly created unverified accounts will be limited to reading 300 posts per day. Existing unverified accounts without the blue checkmark will have a limit of 600 posts per day. In contrast, verified accounts will enjoy a much higher limit of 6,000 posts per day. This announcement was met with disappointment from some users, who expressed concerns about the impact on those who heavily rely on the platform.
One user with a verified account, Disclose.tv, which has around 1.2 million followers, tweeted that limiting the number of posts users can read is outdated and reminiscent of web 1.0. Another user, John Junyszek, a senior community manager, expressed how the new limits might negatively affect users who heavily utilize the platform for their work. He asked Musk if there would be a possibility of increasing the view limit in the future.
Responding to Junyszek’s tweet, Musk stated that the rate limits would soon be raised. Blue check accounts would have a limit of 8,000 posts per day, while unverified accounts would have limits of 800 and 400 posts per day for existing and new accounts, respectively. Musk light-heartedly joked about being rate limited due to reading posts about rate limits.
This decision by Twitter comes after the platform announced that users would need to have an account to view tweets. Musk referred to this move as a “temporary emergency measure” due to concerns about system manipulation and data scraping. Musk had previously expressed dissatisfaction with AI firms, including OpenAI, for using Twitter data to train their large language models.
In April, Musk threatened to sue Microsoft, which has invested heavily in OpenAI, accusing the company of using Twitter data for training purposes. He stated on Twitter that Microsoft trained illegally using Twitter data and called for a lawsuit. However, no evidence or further details regarding the allegations were provided. ChatGPT, owned by OpenAI, is trained using reinforcement learning from human feedback and large amounts of text from various sources, including Twitter.
Musk’s tweet targeting Microsoft followed the announcement that the company was removing Twitter from one of its advertising platforms. Microsoft has not responded to Musk’s threat of a lawsuit regarding the alleged illegal use of Twitter data.
Before these recent developments, Musk joined over 1,100 individuals, including experts and industry executives, such as Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, in signing an open letter calling for a pause in training AI systems more advanced than Chat GPT-4 for at least six months. The letter emphasized the risks AI poses to society and humanity, suggesting that a pause would allow time to develop safety protocols to ensure the responsible use of advanced AI systems.
In response to the letter, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates expressed skepticism about pausing AI development, suggesting that a more focused approach should be taken to address the risks. He criticized the letter’s lack of clarity regarding enforcement and raised concerns about the potential for AI to run out of control or act against human interests.
While Twitter’s decision to limit the number of tweets users can read aims to address system manipulation and data scraping, concerns remain about the impact on users and the need for responsible AI development. The issue of AI’s potential risks to society and humanity continues to be a topic of discussion among industry leaders.