Facebook rolls out API changes, announces restrictions and shutdowns

These API changes closely follow the recent data leak via a Facebook quiz app.

After the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and the recent Facebook quiz app that was found to be leaking data of over 120 million users, the platform has now announced a bunch of API changes aimed at protecting user information better.

These changes in API will impact various developer-facing APIs, which include those used to create social experiences on the site, as well as those for media partners, and more.

With the changes being brought along, Facebook says that it is shutting some of the APIs that have very low adoption, and some of them will mandatorily require app reviews going forward.

Facebook rolls out API changes, announces restrictions and shutdowns

Image credit: REUTERS/Toby Melville

Other than that, the API restrictions includes the deprecation of Facebook’s own test app. Which means, developers will need to use their own apps’ access tokens to test their queries on the Graph API Explorer.

The Professional Expression Kit, which basically let people jazz up their profile photos and create profile videos, is now being shuttered, owing to low adoption. This API will be gone by 1 October.

Further, starting 1 August, Facebook is also shutting Topic Search, Topic Insights and Topic Feed and Public Figure APIs, also due to low adoption. This means, in about a month, public content discovery APIs will be limited to page content and public posts on certain verified profiles.

Pages API is back for the developers, but to use it now, they will need to first get user permission, which will only be granted after they get an app review. Even for the Marketing API, developers will have to go through an app review before they can use the API.

Additionally, Facebook is also introducing new app review permissions for Leads Ads Retrieval, and the Live Video APIs will also have new app review permissions.

Facebook announced all these changes on its Newsroom, where it also hinted that this would not be the last of it, and that the platform will be soon rolling out more such changes. “These changes will continue to enable developers to create social experiences, while protecting people’s information. We will keep you updated on additional changes we make.”

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