Elon Musk puts a reading paywall on Twitter

Twitter CEO Elon Musk continues to blame the social media site’s new limitations on “data scrapers & system manipulation” as he announced new “temporary” limits on how many posts people can read. Musk tweeted late Friday that the “drastic & immediate action was necessary” because of AI companies “from startups to some of the biggest corporations on Earth” scraping “vast amounts of data.”

Now unverified accounts will only be able to see 600 posts per day, and for “new” unverified accounts, just 300 in a day. The limits for verified accounts (presumably whether they’re bought as a part of the Twitter Blue subscription, granted through an organization, or verification Elon forced on people like Stephen King, LeBron James, and anyone else with more than a million followers) still allow reading only a maximum of 6,000 posts per day.

Shortly after that, Musk tweeted that the rate limits would “soon” increase to 8,000 tweets for verified users, 800 for unverified, and 400 for new unverified accounts.

The limitations are being applied one day after Twitter suddenly started blocking access for anyone who isn’t logged in, which Musk claimed was necessary because “Several hundred organizations (maybe more) were scraping Twitter data extremely aggressively, to the point where it was affecting the real user experience.”

When YouTube personality MrBeast replied, saying he was going to see how long it takes for him to look at 6,000 posts, Musk responded, “Should be less than 1 hour and 9 minutes!”

The change is just one of several ways Musk has tried to monetize Twitter in the last several months. The company announced a three-tier API change in March that would begin charging for the use of its API, just three months after finally rolling out the revamped $8 per month Twitter Blue pay-for-verification scheme. Musk has also replaced himself with a new CEO, Linda Yaccarino. The former ad exec from NBC Universal has been hired to restore relationships with advertisers that had slashed their spending on Twitter.