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Thursday, October 5, 2023

Mark Zuckerberg responds to threats from TikTok and Elizabeth Warren

Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg is reportedly considering getting ahead of TikTok. “I think the geopolitical implications of what TikTok is doing, is quite interesting. I think we have time to learn and understand and get ahead of the trend,” Zuckerberg has been reported as saying.

The latest remarks have come in the wake of reports that TikTok seems to have surpassed Instagram in India.

“TikTok has married short-form, immersive video with browse. So it’s almost like the ‘Explore Tab’ that we have on Instagram, which is today primarily about feed posts and highlighting different feed posts,” Zuckerberg has said.

In fact, Facebook had in November 2018 launched a short-format video standalone app called ‘Lasso’, an imitation of TikTok for Android and iOS available only in the US.

However, the app failed to take off and it became evident that an in-built feature in any of the already well-known apps would be a more reliable way to challenge TikTok’s success.

According to reports that was the reason why Instagram was found experimenting with a feature called ‘Clips’, which lets the user record a short video by choosing the length of the video, it’s speed, overlay music, and a countdown before it starts recording. The roll-out of this feature could be due anytime.

Interestingly, another of Facebook’s consistent pursuits has been that of IGTV evidenced by previews of IGTV videos as posts, Stories and in the Explore tab with the newest addition of an option to cross-post IGTV videos to Facebook.

Lately, Instagram has also made ‘Branded Content’ or ‘Paid Partnership’ tag available to boost brand collaborations on IGTV. 

In the leaked recordings/reports, which Zuckerberg seems to have confirmed, he also speculates about a probable scenario where presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren gets elected and the threat she could pose the social media giant.

Warren has famously called for ‘breaking up big tech companies’, such as Facebook and Google, saying such companies “hold too much power and have monopolized the system”.

Zuckerberg reportedly says if any such plan comes into action, they would fight “even if it’s against the government”.

Warren, meanwhile, responded with a series of tweets – #BreakUpBigTechwhere she continued to champion her idea and the reasons behind it — such as Facebook using private information for profiteering and undermining democracy.

At the time of writing, the Menlo Park headquartered social media giant’s shares were trading on the Nasdaq at $179.68.


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