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Twitter suspends Twidroyd, UberTwitter and UberCurrent for violating app policies [Updated]

February 18, 2011 | 12:21 pm

Twitter has suspended UberTwitter and Twidroyd for violating its application policies.

Both UberTwitter, which is available for the iPhone and the most popular Twitter app for BlackBerry phones, and Twidroyd for Android phones, are built by Pasadena-based UberMedia.

In a blog post on Friday morning, Twitter said:

We ask applications that work with Twitter to abide by a simple set of rules that we believe are in the interests of our users, and the health and vitality of the Twitter platform as a whole. We often take actions to enforce these rules.

We have suspended UberTwitter and twidroyd for violating our policies.

More than 3 Million smart phone users access Twitter though UberMedia apps and Web-based services, the company said on its LinkedIn page.

162036_166303623406181_3182427_n A spokeswoman at UberMedia declined to comment on the suspension on Friday morning, but said the company was working on a statement that would be released shortly.

Los Angeles entrepreneur Bill Gross started UberMedia in early 2010 as TweetUp, later renamed PostUp before becoming UberMedia.

The company also makes the UberCurrent app for the iPhone, as well as EchoFon for the iPhone, Mac computers and Firefox Web browser.

Twitter said it suspends hundreds of applications in violation of its policies each day, but most apps are used by few people. "We are taking the unusual step of sharing this with you because today's suspension may affect a larger number of users," Twitter said.

Twitter officials were unavailable Friday to explain how exactly UberTwitter and Twidroyd were in violation of its policies.

[Updated 12:25 p.m.: Carolyn Penner, a Twitter spokeswoman, e-mailed this statement addressing the suspension:

We ask all developers in the Twitter ecosystem to abide by a simple set of rules that are in the interests of our users, as well as the health and vitality of the platform as a whole.

We often take actions to enforce these rules; in fact, on an average day we turn off more than one hundred services that violate our API rules of the road. This keeps the ecosystem fair for everyone.

Today we suspended several applications, including UberTwitter, twidroyd and UberCurrent, which have violated Twitter policies and trademarks in a variety of ways. These violations include, but aren't limited to, a privacy issue with private Direct Messages longer than 140 characters, trademark infringement, and changing the content of users' Tweets in order to make money.

We've had conversations with UberMedia, the developer of these applications, about policy violations since April 2010, when they first launched under the name TweetUp – a term commonly used by Twitter users and a trademark violation. We continue to be in contact with UberMedia and hope that they will bring the suspended applications into compliance with our policies soon.]

[Updated 1:30 p.m.: A spokeswoman for UberMedia sent along a statement from CEO Bill Gross on the suspensions.

Gross said Twitter shut off access for Twidroyd, UberTwitter and UberCurrent to its service on Friday morning -- but the applications should be back up soon.

After shutting off Twitter access for the three apps, "Twitter then notified us that they believed we were in violation of several provisions of their terms of servic," Gross said. "We were immediately in touch with Twitter, and the changes they asked us to make were very small.

"As a result, we have completed the changes, and new apps are currently being posted to their respective stores. Twitter has assured us that as soon as those changes were complete, they would reactivate our applications."

Twitter asked UberMedia to change the name of UberTwitter as well, he said.

"We began a process of changing the name three weeks ago by polling our users, and we've decided based on their input to change the product name to UberSocial, which we completed today," Gross said.]

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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles

twitter.com/nateog

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