Twitter has confirmed that there is a bug with its new disappearing message feature where these messages can still be accessed after they should have vanished, reports TechCrunch.
These messages, which Twitter calls “fleets,” were launched last Wednesday and are very similar to Facebook and Instagram Stories as they are meant to vanish after 24 hours.
The feature is available across both iOS and Android, and allow users to publish text posts, reactions, photos, or videos that will disappear a day later.
“Because they disappear from view after a day, Fleets helped people feel more comfortable sharing personal and casual thoughts, opinions, and feelings,” said Twitter regarding its testing of the feature.
However, it has now been discovered that fleets can be accessed beyond the 24-hour period after which they are meant to disappear.
This is possible using an app that is designed to interface with Twitter’s back-end through the Twitter developer API.
This app allows users to access lists of fleets from Twitter’s servers, and each fleet has its own URL which can be opened in a browser to view the original fleet in either image or video form.
These links continue to work after 24 hours has passed and the fleet is no longer visible on the user’s profile.
full disclosure: scraping fleets from public accounts without triggering the read notification
the endpoint is: https://t.co/332FH7TEmN
— cathode gay tube (@donk_enby) November 20, 2020
Twitter working on a fix
Twitter told TechCrunch that it is working on a fix for this issue.
“We’re aware of a bug accessible through a technical workaround where some Fleets media URLs may be accessible after 24 hours,” said Twitter.
“We are working on a fix that should be rolled out shortly.”
However, this will not involve deleting fleets from its servers after the 24-hour period is up. Instead, it keeps fleets on its servers for up to 30 days, or even longer if they break the social network’s rules.