Announcing Etsy’s New API

Posted by on April 22, 2010

Today I’m pleased to announce the pilot program of Etsy’s new read-write API, version 2.

For a few months now, we’ve made veiled references to “the next version of the API” in response to bugs and feature requests for our current API, but hadn’t made any official announcements or given a timeline.  Behind the scenes, we’ve been working on a totally-new, revamped API that will eventually replace the current one.

Here’s a brief overview of some of the new features of this API:

Read-Write Support via OAuth The new API supports OAuth, a way of letting 3rd-party applications log into your Etsy account without requiring you to hand out your username and password (If you’ve ever used a Twitter client like Tweetie, you’ve used OAuth.)  This means that applications written on the new API will be able to interact with your Etsy account in totally new ways.

Built on Etsy’s New Platform You may have noticed that the current API seems to lag behind the rest of by five or ten minutes–this is because we’re caching the API results fairly heavily.  For the past year, we’ve been quietly upgrading the infrastructure behind Etsy piece-by-piece, and this process has finally caught up with the API.  The new API will not have a delay compared to the rest of the site, and will receive bugfixes and updates on a regular schedule.

New, Cleaner Interface We’re doing away with the “detail levels” of the old API in favor of a new interface that lets you specify which fields and child objects to include with every request.  For instance, you’ll be able to include images within a listing, listings within a shop, or the user who owns a shop within it.  You’ll also be able to filter out fields that you don’t care about, which will keep the size of your requests at a minimum.  This is much more flexible than the old “low, medium and high” system.

We’re calling this a “pilot” because not everything is finished yet.  To start off with, we’ll be opening the beta up to a small group of testers.  The top users of the current API will be included, as will everyone who’s already written in asking to become a beta tester.  Then, we’ll get to work fixing the bugs that are found and adding new features.  Every time we add new features to the API, we’ll open it up to a few more beta testers.

Here’s what you’ll find in the pilot API:

Here’s what you won’t find in the pilot (but that we’re working on:)

In addition, the new API won’t be backwards-compatible with the current API.  The current API will remain online for the duration of the beta phase.  Once the new API launches, the current API will remain online for six additional months.  This will give you plenty of time to upgrade your applications to the new API.

If you’d like to become a beta tester, send an email to <>.  We’ll hand out API keys on a first-come, first-served basis.

We hope you’re as excited as we are!

Posted by on April 22, 2010
Category: api


Very exciting! Can’t wait to see what’s created with these new features.

Sweet. I will check this out. Can you download sales data as well?

Looking forward to it 🙂

This is a good step in the right direction.

This definitely resolves a load of issues from the previous API!

The replacement for the detail level system sounds perfect. The scope system sounds very powerful, as well. Doing away with the caching is also very welcome.

There’s a lot to take in, with the OAuth and all. We’re looking forward to working with the new API!

This is great, I’m excited to dig in.

Nice work. Is there any kind of documentation we could take a look at? Would help to know what to expect

The documentation is only available to beta testers, but there are still slots available. Write to if you’d like to sign up.

Looking forward to digging in & learning about the new API, hopefully making some nice applications.

It’s great to see that the API is maturing … Keep up the good work! Can’t wait to see what gets baked…