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An open letter to developers. Pls stop fucking up the APIs ecosystem. Posted 1 year ago

Dear developers (API providers),

pls stop fucking up your public APIs.

Every week there is an API that is changing, being shutted down, or malfuctioning. If this trend will continue, we lose trust in using third party services via APIs and we’ll just go back to the old way and reinvent the wheel, by ourself.

Reliabilty and trust are the most important things for this ecosystem. 

We’re seeing an explosion of public APIs, so the trend is strong, but still fragile. 

"next time someone told me why I keep reinventing the wheel, is because the wheel does not work"

This is what I heard, from a developer few weeks back. And you know what? He’s right.  You can’t launch an API, get people relying on you, and then out of nowhere, you wake up and say:

sorry, we’re going to shut down this. Good luck!


Do you want some recent examples?

Twitter is fucking it up - multiple times.

http://scripting.com/stories/2012/07/07/twitterIsACorporateApi.html

Face.com fucked up

http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4211021

Simplegeo fucked up

http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3457635

I think we’re at a inflection point. Go big or go home. The future of APIs can be: 

1) Third party APIs are going to be mainstream in the software development and they will become THE way we build software.

or

2) They will be left in the dust, because developers have lost trust.

The desitny is attached to all the API providers. The way they are going to RESPECT and MAINTAIN THEIR PROMISES to their developers is crucial, to define the future of this ecosystem. Do less fanfare when you launch an API and stay heads down and keep that API alive as much as you can. There are people that are investing their love and time on you.

Please stop play around, we trust you, we rely on you. Don’t fuck it up. 

Thanks.

Augusto

CEO of Mashape

@sinzone