Elon Musk didn’t have to take Twitter to the bottom of the sea in a dingy submersible to implode. Meanwhile, Zuck is reviving an old concept to bridge the gap. Twitter is dying – what’s next? Is it threads? Probably not, but for now it’s back.
Mark Zuckerberg is reckoning with the huge gap that has emerged after several social media blunders. The most serious of these affected all users this weekend. Musk made a secret change so Twitter is only visible to people who have signed in with an account. As a result, Twitter’s search presence on Google dropped 32% over the weekend, which saw Twitter remain in the online country club state. The self-inflicted wound on Twitter has created a huge opportunity for a competent rival.
Threads started on July 6th and Zuckerberg has confirmed that at least 30 million people are using the new version. But a quick look at some of the accounts that exist on the app and it feels like you’re in a corporate Bizzaro world, with Ellen DeGeneres making memes with the Back Street Boys. Maybe a bit like walking into a wax museum full of celebrity clones laden with their favorite catchphrases – eerily spooky valley. I wouldn’t expect any less from Zuckerberg himself.
What are threads?
Meta attempted this once back in 2021, and quickly shut down the experiment as Twitter failed to embrace the social media equivalent of open-heart surgery led by Dr. Frankenstein underwent. It’s a feed of text-based posts where users can also post videos and photos while talking in real-time – similar to Twitter.
Threads are limited to 500 characters and contain replies, quotes, and reposts of other people’s threads. But it also uses your existing Instagram account if you already have one. Since a Threads account and an Instagram account are the same, if you want to delete threads:You will also lose your Instagram account.
It is available in most countries except the EU. Because Meta doesn’t want to get in trouble with European laws and the Digital Markets Act, which contain provisions on how data can be shared across multiple platforms. Meta requires approval from the European Commission before something like Threads can be made available in EU countries.
So what for Data collects threads? A privacy disclosure lists information about a user’s health, finances, contacts, search history, location, and other sensitive information. Threads may also share data with third parties, including sexual orientation, religious and political beliefs, race, ethnicity, body, and employment status.
Even Elon is feeling the heat, hinting he’d sue Meta and Mark Zuckerberg Trade secrets misappropriated. But that also comes from the man who laid off two-thirds of his workforce and told them they would be happier elsewhere. If Meta were willing to pay for the institutional knowledge of these engineers to electroshock threads, it all seems a bit sour. But maybe it’s still too early to tell.