Tweetbot and Twitterrific Users Can Support the Developers by Declining Subscription Refunds

Popular Twitter clients Tweetbot and Twitterrific stopped working overnight in January after Twitter disabled the API used by third-party apps. Twitter gave zero warning that the apps were being blocked from accessing Twitter content, and in fact made no statement on the situation for well over a week.

twitterrific tweetbot refund options
Twitter then officially updated its terms of service to ban all apps similar to the Twitter app. Twitter clients that had been operating for more than a decade were all of a sudden banned, with no communication from Twitter, no heads up, and with no way for the developers to figure out a way to carefully unwind their businesses and communicate the shutdown to customers.

Tweetbot and Twitterrific, two of the most used Twitter clients, had subscription offerings and thousands of customers that paid for subscriptions on a yearly basis. With the apps unable to function, pro-rated refunds are set to be automatically issued to subscribers next month, which will heavily impact businesses that had no warning their income stream would be cut off.

Those refunds are going to be paid largely by Tweetbot and Twitterific rather than Apple. As John Gruber points out on Daring Fireball, this is akin to a person getting fired and then having to pay back their last six months of salary. It is a significant financial blow to app developers put out of business by Twitter's snap decision.

Tweetbot and Twitterrific have teamed up to offer multiple options to customers who are due refunds, and customers who want to help need to do the following:

  1. Open Tweetbot or Twitterrific (or redownload the apps if they've been deleted and open them).
  2. Choose the "I don't need a refund button." Alternatively, for Tweetbot, choose to transfer the subscription over to the new Ivory app for Mastodon.

Because refunds are being issued automatically, Tweetbot and Twitterrific customers who have been happy with their service and want to help the developers out will have to manually opt out using this method.

Customers who do want a refund can do nothing and will receive a pro-rated refund on March 28. Anyone who does not hit that "I don't need a refund button" will get their money back for the months that were left on the subscription at the time that the apps stopped functioning.

The apps have already been unavailable for more than a month, which means Tweetbot and Twitterific have no way to contact customers who are likely no longer even opening up the apps, or who have already deleted them entirely. Many customers will be issued refunds without even electing to be refunded as it is an automatic process without the manual opt-out.

Twitterrific developers Iconfactory and Tweetbot developers Tapbots both have other apps, but Tweetbot and Twitterrific were their main apps. Apple will require them to pay between 70 and 85 percent of each refund, depending on how long each person was subscribed (70% for those subscribed for less than a year, and 85% for those subscribed over a year). Apple will pay the remaining 15 to 30 percent, as that is the cut that Apple had been taking from subscriptions.

Tapbots has already transitioned to Mastodon and offers the Ivory client on both iPhone and Mac, while Iconfactory is focusing on its other apps like Linea Sketch.

Popular Stories

iPhone 16 Pro Sizes Feature

iPhone 16 Series Is Just Two Months Away: Everything We Know

Monday July 15, 2024 4:44 am PDT by
Apple typically releases its new iPhone series around mid-September, which means we are about two months out from the launch of the iPhone 16. Like the iPhone 15 series, this year's lineup is expected to stick with four models – iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Plus, iPhone 16 Pro, and iPhone 16 Pro Max – although there are plenty of design differences and new features to take into account. To bring ...
macbook pro january

Best Buy's Black Friday in July Sale Takes Up to $700 Off M3 MacBook Pro for Members

Monday July 15, 2024 11:05 am PDT by
Best Buy's "Black Friday in July" sale is in full swing today, and in addition to a few iPad Air discounts we shared earlier, there are also some steep markdowns on the M3 MacBook Pro. You will need a My Best Buy Plus or Total membership in order to get some of these deals. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Best Buy. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small...
ipaos 18 image playground

Apple Releases First iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 Public Betas

Monday July 15, 2024 1:16 pm PDT by
Apple today provided the first betas of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to public beta testers, bringing the new software to the general public for the first time since the Worldwide Developers Conference in June. Apple has seeded three developer betas so far, and the first public beta includes the same content that's in the third developer beta. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. ...

Apple's AirPods Pro 2 vs. Samsung's Galaxy Buds3 Pro

Saturday July 13, 2024 8:00 am PDT by
Samsung this week introduced its latest earbuds, the Galaxy Buds3 Pro, which look quite a bit like Apple's AirPods Pro 2. Given the similarities, we thought we'd compare Samsung's new earbuds to the AirPods Pro. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Design wise, you could potentially mistake Samsung's Galaxy Buds3 Pro for the AirPods Pro. The Buds3 Pro have the same...
Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID Single Camera Hole

10 Reasons to Wait for Next Year's iPhone 17

Monday July 8, 2024 5:00 am PDT by
Apple's iPhone development roadmap runs several years into the future and the company is continually working with suppliers on several successive iPhone models simultaneously, which is why we sometimes get rumored feature leaks so far ahead of launch. The iPhone 17 series is no different – already we have some idea of what to expect from Apple's 2025 smartphone lineup. If you plan to skip...
Generic iOS 18 Feature Real Mock

Apple Seeds Revised Third Betas of iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to Developers

Monday July 15, 2024 10:09 am PDT by
Apple today seeded updated third betas iOS 18 and iPadOS 18 to developers for testing purposes, with the software coming a week after Apple initially released the third betas. Registered developers are able to opt into the betas by opening up the Settings app, going to the Software Update section, tapping on the "Beta Updates" option, and toggling on the ‌iOS 18/iPadOS 18‌ Developer Beta ...

Top Rated Comments

Syk Avatar
18 months ago

You have to be pretty scummy to ask for a refund.
How so? You paid for a service you no longer are receiving. There's nothing scummy about that.
Score: 73 Votes (Like | Disagree)
swrobel Avatar
18 months ago
You can see just how few developers read MacRumors by the complete lack of empathy in these comments ??‍♂️
Score: 49 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Puonti Avatar
18 months ago
That's an easy "Do not need a refund". Tweetbot was great.
Score: 45 Votes (Like | Disagree)
drew0020 Avatar
18 months ago

You can see just how few developers read MacRumors by the complete lack of empathy in these comments ??‍♂️
I mean let’s be honest most people on here balk at paying $0.99 cents for an app that is essential to them. I wouldn’t want them as my customers with this sort of attitude lol
Score: 43 Votes (Like | Disagree)
xEODGuy Avatar
18 months ago
So, let me get this straight...I should opt out of getting a refund from a company that didn't supply what they said they would because it's someone else's fault that they can't deliver it? How about this: they stop whining, give back all the money that they were given for nothing, and sue Twitter for what they think they're owed?
Score: 36 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RalfTheDog Avatar
18 months ago

As they should be! While I feel for both companies passing the buck to consumers that paid for a service is a bad optic.

Perhaps both Tweetbot and Twitterific should have had better contracts/agreements with Twitter? If you base your business model on that weak a relationship you kind of get what you deserve.
It's not like Twitter is living up to their contracts anyway.
Score: 34 Votes (Like | Disagree)