Meta Platforms is looking into launching an all-new decentralized social network, designed mainly to support text updates.
Additional information about this new platform was published by Reuters on Friday, March 10, 2023, and cited a spokesperson from the platform.
Meta runs two social media platforms, Facebook and Instagram not to mention Messenger and Whatsapp.
Meta Is Taking The Fight Directly to Elon Musk’s Twitter
According to the spokesperson quoted by Reuters, Meta believes there is room for another platform “where creators and public figures can share timely updates about their lives.”
The content app will likely feature an ActivityPub, which currently powers Twitter’s direct competitor Mastodon in addition to other amalgamated apps.
“We’re exploring a standalone decentralized social network for sharing text updates. We believe there’s an opportunity for a separate space where creators and public figures can share timely updates about their interests,” a statement sent by Meta’s spokesperson to Reuters reads in part.
According to Moneycontrol.com, the decentralized social network will feature a branding similar to Instagram and provide an option for users to use their Instagram login details to sign up or log in to the app.
Despite Moneycontrol.com having a copy of the internal product brief – which included details on functionality and key product features – it was too early to tell if the app is at the idea stage or whether it had advanced to the development stage.
A source privy to the details of the product confirmed to Moneycontrol that it was a work in progress.
A decentralized social network does not fall under the control of one entity which is the case with Facebook and Twitter.
Platforms like Mastodon are powered by thousands of servers controlled by administrators who volunteer to merge their systems in a federation setup.
Why Is P92 Important To Meta?
Although Meta built Facebook from the ground up, it has over the years added to its product lineup, social platforms like Instagram and Whatsapp.
When Meta is not building from scratch, it would be looking for the next big acquisition, the same way it bought Instagram.
However, this time, the Mark Zuckerberg-led company appears to be digressing toward building new products.
Besides technological advancement, user trends are drastically changing how companies and startups view the products they bring to the market.
There has been a global outcry since Elon Musk took over Twitter, forcing users to seek alternative platforms.
Meta is likely to be presenting itself as the next best alternative to Twitter with this new decentralized social networking platform, dubbed P92.
Meta’s P92 is not the only company considering or building a new social networking platform, over the last few months Mastodon, T2, and Post.news have all been launched to rival Twitter.
Meta has also been improving existing platforms. Instagram got a new feature—Notes in December 2022, allowing users to share short posts of not more than 60 characters, integrating emojis and texts.
Meta has, according to a report published by The New York Times, deliberated flipping Instagram Notes into another Twitter rival.
“The plan as of now is that the MVP (minimum viable product) will definitely allow our users to broadcast posts to people on other servers.”
“It may or may not enable our users to follow and view the content of people on other servers,” Moneycontrol reported from a source familiar with the matter.
Meta’s P92 could launch with many features similar to Twitter such as tappable links in posts, containing previews, usernames, user bios, and the coveted verification badges.
Other features likely to debut on the initial versions of the app are shareable images and videos.
The internal product brief on P92 did not mention features that allow messaging and commenting. While they are likely to miss in the first versions, they will be added in later upgrades.
Users will be able to follow and be followed as well as like content shared by other community members.
“The team is also discussing whether to have the ability to reshare content like Twitter apart from business and creator accounts.
“A rights manager will be integrated from the beginning for first-party content, but probably not for third-party content from other apps and servers,” another source hinted to Moneycontrol.
“Eventually, the graph will split and, after initial sign up, the data sharing from Instagram to P92 will be minimal, if not none,” the product brief outlined.
Users need to understand that the P92 team is likely to tap data provided by all Instagram users to carry out targeted analysis to support product improvement to ensure those who sign up on the new decentralized social network rank as expected.
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