There’s a way around the six second limit in Vine that 16 year old Will Smidlein discovered. He published his discovery in style with one of the Internet’s favorite and most hated practical jokes: The Rickroll. Twitter wasn’t too pleased about the incident and let the teenager have it, and as a result he’s apologizing … sort of.
The project all started when the 16-year-old developer decided to tinker with the app right after it was released for Android. The Vine video with the encoded Rick Astley video was the first thing that he says he had available that would have fit into the platform at the time. But little did he realize just how viral this three-and-half minute Vine video would get.
He isn’t the first to find a loophole to Vine’s six-second rule. A few blogs have detailed how to use a jailbroken iOS device and iFile to upload a Vine video that lasts longer than six seconds as well. And if we’re being technical, Vine videos are actually longer than six seconds … by about .3 seconds, as Cnet documented.
Of course the Rickroll took things to all new heights and mass-outed the ability for users to get-around Vine’s time limits. This all apparently peeved a Twitter engineer in particular – which makes sense, given the fact that someone had exposed a vulnerability in Twitter’s own product.
You can’t recreate the strategy that Smidlein used, which involved “recreating the Vine API” as The Verge reports in an Interview with him, seeing as how Twitter has asked him to take down the Astley video and patched the hole up already. “When a big engineer at Twitter asks you to take something down, you take it down,” Smidlein told The Verge.
Smidlein publicly announced his remorse.
Sorry, Twitter/Vine engineers. I tried to keep it quiet, but the internet never forgets.
— Will Smidlein (@ws) June 3, 2013
It’s probably only a matter of time until we find yet another way around the rules, however.