Twitter owner Elon Musk has announced he has imposed a number of new restrictions on those who make use of the social media website
Twitter has applied temporary reading limits to clamp down on "extreme levels" of data scraping and system manipulation, Elon Musk said.
In a tweet, he outlined that verified accounts have been limited to reading 6,000 posts a day, while unverified accounts can read 600 a day.
Newly unverified Twitter accounts will only be able to read 300 posts each day.
In a subsequent tweet, he wrote: "Rate limits increasing soon to 8000 for verified, 800 for unverified & 400 for new unverified."
The Tesla and SpaceX CEO said Twitter had imposed the “temporary limit” to “address extreme levels of data scraping & system manipulation”.
In the UK, a peak of 5,126 people complained of problems accessing the site at 4.12pm on Saturday, according to the website Downdetector – which tracks online outages.
In the US, some 7,461 people complained of issues as of 4.15pm UK time, the site notes.
#Twitterdown and RIP Twitter began trending as frustrated users were faced with a message saying “Rate limit exceeded. Please wait a few moments then try again”.
After taking over Twitter, Mr Musk laid off some 80% of its 8,000 global staff – and admitted it resulted in the platform losing a large amount of its functionality.
He also oversaw the scrapping of legacy “blue ticks”, which verified a user’s identity and were replaced by a paid-for subscription called Twitter Blue.
High-profile figures and celebrities said the move leaves the platform open to imposters and disinformation.
Users who pay £9.60 a month, or £115.20 annually, receive the blue tick and can make longer tweets up to 10,000 characters.
Other select features available only to subscribers include non-fungible token (NFT) profile pictures, making changes to published tweets and seeing around 50% fewer ads.
Twitter has said that the service “elevates quality conversations”.
Entrepreneur Mr Musk, prior to buying the platform, revealed plans to turn it into “X, the everything app”.
In December, just weeks after the takeover, Mr Musk tweeted: “I will resign as CEO as soon as I find someone foolish enough to take the job.”
The pledge came after millions of Twitter users asked him to step down in a poll Mr Musk created and promised to abide by.
In May, Mr Musk confirmed that advertising executive Linda Yaccarino, formerly of NBCUniversal, was replacing him as Twitter’s chief executive.
Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know.