Facebook parent Meta considering launching Twitter-style stand-alone text-based social network amidst chaos at Elon Musk-owned platform
Facebook and Instagram parent Meta Platforms has said it is considering launching a stand-alone, text-based social network similar to Twitter.
“We’re exploring a standalone decentralised social network for sharing text updates,” Meta told Silicon UK.
“We believe there’s an opportunity for a separate space where creators and public figures can share timely updates about their interests.”
The move could allow Meta to capitalise on the disarray at Twitter since its takeover by entrepreneur Elon Musk late last year, which has seen millions of users flock to rival platforms.
Decentralised network Mastodon, a Twitter competitor, saw its user base grow from less than 500,000 active users in late October to more than 2.5 million in early December, although it fell to about 1.8 million users by early January.
Twitter’s advertising base has also diminished amidst controversy over Musk’s moves such as restoring suspended users or introducing a paid verification service that resulted in a proliferation of scam accounts.
A report by Moneycontrol citing unnamed sources said Meta’s app, codenamed P92, would be Instagram-branded and would initially require users to sign up with their Instagram credentials.
The report said P92 would support ActivityPub, the decentralised networking protocol that powers Mastodon and other decentralised apps.
It wasn’t immediately clear when Meta might launch the app.
The move comes at a time when Meta’s Facebook is struggling to retain the attention of younger users, while Instagram faces stiff competition from TikTok.
Meta is expected to announce a fresh round of layoffs this week, the beginning of cuts planned over the next few months that could rival the mass job losses it announced late last year, the Wall Street Journal reported.