Mysterious X Bug Breaks Links And Images In Old Twitter Posts

Update: Despite speculation that X was deliberately removing images from old tweets as a way to cut down on server expenses, the company formerly known as Twitter has confirmed that this is merely a bug, the actual data hasn't been lost, and the images and links will soon be functional again. However, no information on what went wrong has been provided at this time.

It appears that X — the platform formerly known as Twitter — is having yet another meltdown. Many users have noticed that some posts with images embedded no longer show the pictures. Interestingly, the issue seemingly only affects content posted in 2014 and earlier. For example, the viral Oscar selfie tweeted by talk show host Ellen DeGeneres was briefly gone, but later restored. The issue was first highlighted by Tom Coates, who noted in a tweet that it could either be an issue with Twitter's in-house link redirecting system — which follows a "" approach — or it could be a server storage issue.

So far, X hasn't made an official statement regarding the glitch. However, the issue appears to be random in nature. For example, a popular tweet by former President Barack Obama from 2012 appears to be fine. The embedded image URL, which follows the pbs.twimg format, is also functional, indicating that the problem may indeed be due to Twitter's "" URL shortener.

Another plausible explanation is that Twitter is having server storage issues. X relies on cloud resources — which include storing massive amounts of user data — provided by the likes of Google. Shortly after acquiring the company, insiders claimed that Musk was exploring cost-cutting measures that targeted potentially key infrastructure, and he even reportedly refused to pay Google's cloud server bills.

Another glitchy day for Musk's X

It seems the bug also affects URLs leading to other websites. For example, a tweet by journalist Matt Novak had a URL leading to a Gizmodo article. However, the article preview is no longer visible, and the original URL has also been replaced by two short links. An archived version of the same tweet (below) shows the article preview, as well as an active clickable link that Novak mentioned in his tweet.

This isn't the first time Twitter has experienced this kind of bug. In the first week of March 2023, links embedded within some tweets were broken, but the issue was soon resolved. The Twitter Support account explained at the time that it was the result of "an internal change that had some unintended consequences." A similar issue happened in 2016, as well, with some Mac users reporting at the time that "" shortened URLs weren't opening properly in Apple's Safari browser.