Well, that’s a bummer.
X (formerly known as Twitter) has been around for a long, long time. That means there are lots of old posts on the site, and according to a report from The Verge, many of those old posts are now functionally useless thanks to a new bug that’s erasing images from old tweets. Specifically, the site is having trouble with images that were attached to tweets via Twitter’s URL shortener. Instead of displaying images, a lot of those tweets are now just displaying empty URLs.
Per The Verge, it’s happening to posts from before December 2014. Over the weekend, there was some speculation that perhaps the images had been deleted on purpose as a belt-tightening move, but some of them have since been restored. I can personally vouch that the famous Ellen DeGeneres Oscars selfie was gone over the weekend, but it’s back now.
As for why this happened, there’s no definitive answer yet, though The Verge noted that Twitter added a feature to stop attachment URLs from counting against the character limit in 2016, with metadata that appeared around December 2014.
In other words, something goofy happened behind-the-scenes and now a site that may or may not still employ engineers has to figure out how to fix it. If not, a substantial portion of internet history could go down the toilet.