Twitter Bug Lets Fleets Be Viewed and Downloaded Long After Expiration

Twitter's new ephemeral tweets, or "fleets," have been hit by a bug that allows them to be accessed long after their supposed 24-hour expiration time, less than a week after the feature launched.

twitterfleets
Fleets are short stories made up of photos or videos with overlaying text. Much like stories on Instagram or Facebook, fleets are located at the top of the Twitter timeline.

According to Techcrunch, the bug allowed fleets to be viewed and downloaded by other users without notifying their creator. Details of the bug were posted in a series of tweets over the weekend. Twitter soon acknowledged the issue and says a fix is on the way.

“We're aware of a bug accessible through a technical workaround where some Fleets media URLs may be accessible after 24 hours," a Twitter spokesperson told TechCrunch. "We are working on a fix that should be rolled out shortly."

The workaround refers to a developer app that could reportedly scrape fleets from public accounts through Twitter's API. However, once Twitter's fix is applied, URLs for fleets won't work whether they're active or expired.

Twitter says it doesn't delete fleets from its servers for up to 30 days, and it may retain fleets for longer if they violate its rules.

Tag: Twitter

Top Rated Comments

sfwalter Avatar
8 weeks ago


Like they are really deleted. Twitter keeps them forever internally. o_O

Yep. Never trust any service which says they delete your content. After all they need an opportunity to monetize it. 24 hours just isn’t enough time.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
alpi123 Avatar
8 weeks ago
We just wanted editable tweets...
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
polyphenol Avatar
8 weeks ago
Does anyone actually intend using this feature?

I am not a Twitter user - just have a look when others post about tweets. But I am trying to get my head around why people would use them? When there are so many ways of recording them - such as a simple screenshot.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
farewelwilliams Avatar
8 weeks ago
useless feature causing issues.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MHenr Avatar
8 weeks ago


I don't see any sense about it beyond other social media like Instagram or Snapchat, but here, Spain, even one sports newspaper has just put up "Stories" on the home page of the newspaper, nothing surprises me now, waiting for a toilet with "Stories" or something like that.

Well the name "fleet" is not very far off a toilet connotation.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macintoshmac Avatar
8 weeks ago
It's just a fleeting bug. Oh, wait.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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