Instagram lead Adam Mosseri said in two Threads posts Friday that the new app would not encourage “politics and hard news” on its platform, a far cry from the promoted political content found on its rival platform Twitter.
The Key Facts
Mosseri said in a Threads conversation that the new platform will inevitably contain politics and hard news, but that Threads is “not going to do anything to encourage those verticals,”—an approach adopted by Facebook in 2021.
Mosseri said that despite the potential engagement and revenue, the content’s negative impact on the platform or its integrity is not worth it.
“The goal isn’t to replace Twitter,” Mosseri added, referencing the rival platform that has greatly encouraged political content and hosted live audio conversations featuring former Twitter CEO Elon Musk and GOP presidential candidates.
Meta and Twitter both allow their users to purchase verification on the respective platforms.
The Crucial Quote
“The goal isn’t to replace Twitter,” Mosseri said. “The goal is to create a public square for communities on Instagram that never really embraced Twitter and for communities on Twitter (and other platforms) that are interested in a less angry place for conversations, but not all of Twitter.”
70 million. That’s how many sign-ups Threads hit Friday morning.
Facebook’s struggles before 2021, when it eliminated such content from its platform, likely influenced Threads’ decision. According to a recent study, Facebook had spread false news quicker than any social website in the year 2020 during the build-up of the presidential elections. Separate 2021 research concluded that Facebook could have prevented over 10 billion views for popular pages which posted misinformation prior to elections. By early 2021, the social media site changed its algorithm to lessen the amount of political content in users’ feeds. Since then, the platform’s content has been in stark contrast with Twitter which, after Musk purchased it for $44 billion, encouraged political content. Musk, who stays active on the app, has encouraged politicians to engage with him on Twitter Spaces—allowing Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-Fl), launched his presidential campaign by using the feature of live audio. Tucker Carlson, a former Fox News anchorman, uses Twitter to post episodes of his independent commentary program. On Carlson’s first episode of the show, he said he and his team were “grateful” to be on Twitter and were told there were no “gatekeepers” on the platform.
Threads isn’t for news and politics, says Instagram’s boss (The Verge)
Meta Threads doesn’t need the ‘negativity’ of hard news and politics, exec says (CNBC)