Image and Link Issues Surface on X 

X, formerly known as Twitter, faces a significant glitch causing the inability to display images and links associated with old posts. This problem appears to predominantly affect content published prior to December 2014.

Discovery of the Glitch

On Saturday, both Tom Coates and Brazilian vtuber, @DaniloTakagi, spotlighted this issue, drawing the online community’s attention to the apparent malfunction. Notably, links converted via Twitter’s in-built URL shortener and images attached to old tweets seem to be affected, though videos remain unaffected. One notable exception is that links to platforms such as YouTube are now visible only as unclickable text URLs.

Major Tweets Affected

The famous 2014 Oscars selfie posted by Ellen DeGeneres, quickly became the “most retweeted ever,” garnering over 2 million shares. A tweet from President Barack Obama after his 2012 re-election victory, displaying an intimate hug with the First Lady. While DeGeneres’ selfie was temporarily lost due to the glitch, it was restored by early Sunday. However, the restoration process does not seem to be universal, with many users still waiting for their content to be made available again.

Speculations and Insights

  • Despite initial speculations, particularly surrounding Elon Musk’s cost-cutting tactics, indicators lean towards this issue being more technical than deliberate.
  • The actual media and data seem intact on X’s servers, hinting at the possibility of a recovery.
  • Analysts have drawn correlations between this glitch and changes implemented by Twitter in 2016. The introduction of “enhanced URL enrichment” during this period, which provides website HTML titles and descriptions within tweets, might be a potential lead.

User Concerns

Many users have voiced their concerns and frustrations over the potential loss of their digital memories. While for some it’s about personal moments shared with friends and family, for others it represents significant historical or professional milestones. The loss of images and links can render tweets contextless, stripping them of their meaning and significance.

Twitter’s Evolving Tech Landscape

A brief look at Twitter’s tech changes, as per the X Developer Platform Data Dictionary:

  • March 2012: Introduction of the expanded URL enrichment, before which tweets only contained user-provided URLs. This change made it easier to work with URLs.
  • July 2016: Enhanced URL enrichment made its debut, offering a website’s HTML title and description within tweets, in addition to operators for matching content.
  • September 2016: Twitter introduced ‘native attachments,’ a feature ensuring shared links wouldn’t count against the 140-character limit, preserving both previous URL enrichment methods.

Response from X

While the glitch has undoubtedly disrupted the experience of many X users, as of now, neither Elon Musk nor X CEO Linda Yaccarino has made any public comments regarding the issue. X’s official channels have not provided any clarification either, leaving users and analysts speculating on the potential cause and awaiting an official statement.


The unavailability of images and links from old posts on X, especially from such a significant period, has raised concerns among its users. As investigations continue and speculations swirl, the global user base eagerly awaits a solution, and more importantly, communication from the platform’s leadership. Whether this glitch is a mere technical error or indicative of broader issues within the platform remains to be seen, but it serves as a reminder of the challenges that come with managing vast digital archives and the responsibilities social media giants like X have towards preserving internet history.

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