{"API Evangelist"}

Best Buy Will Not Issue API Keys To Free Email Accounts And Wants To Get To Know Your Company

Best Buy is one of the many of the recent responses I am seeing from public API providers, as they work to strike a healthy balance within their API community. In an attempt to incentivize the behavior they desire within the Best Buy API community, the platform will not be issuing API keys to any email address that comes from the popular free email platforms (@google.com, @yahoo.com, etc.). While I hate seeing any public API access be tightened up, I can't help but sympathize with their move, and I have to support any API providers who works to set a healthy balance within their communities.

While I am not sure limiting access based upon email account may not be the solution they are looking, they hit all the right notes for me:

I will always encourage companies, organizations, institutions, government agencies, and individuals to be as public as possible. More importantly i will always encourage them to do it in the safest, most meaningful way possible, and when they are just working to cultivate and get to know their community -- I can only lend my support. Looking beyond the tech, APIs are all hammering out how you discover, and maintain digital relationships and partnerships, via your website, web and mobile applications, as well as your API platform.

Not every comopany will be able to do API the way Best Buy is. Its just not in the DNA of every company. The ones that will be most successful with it, will be the ones that do the hard work of getting to know their community, establish sensible ground rules, but in my opinion the most critical part it all, is that you be as communicative and transparent about it as you possibly can. The Best Buy API does this well, by sharing their thoughts behind their difficult decision to lock down on API keys issued to users with free email accounts.