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Upfront's DataSift Hit By Twitter Shift

DataSift, the social data API and analytics firm which is heavily backed by LA's Upfront Ventures, has been hit by a major change by Twitter, which is totally cutting off access to its data via DataSift. According to Twitter, it is looking to create "direct" relationships with its data partners, and is shutting off access to third party data providers--including DataSift. Twitter said that, instead, anyone needing its fire hose of data should go through Gnip, the social data provider which Twitter acquired last year. DataSift said that Twitter has "seriously damaged the ecosystem this week" and saying that Twitter "doesn't understand the basic rules of this market."

Despite the setback, DataSift said it is instead turning to Facebook, the "undisputed largest source of social data on earth" for much of its data. Upfront Ventures was the series A investor in DataSift, which had represented a part of the company's strategy of investing in the Twitter ecosystem. This is the second Twitter-related Upfront investment to be blindsided by Twitter; a former investment, Ad.ly, had faced a ban by Twitter forcing that firm to also rethink its model; Ad.ly's CEO at the time, Sean Rad, is now CEO of Tinder.


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