December 19, 2018

Will Zuckerberg Destroy Instagram?

“Instagram is one of tech’s great success stories. The network has seen incredible growth over the past couple of years to become a platform with 1 billion users. So this week, when founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger announced they were leaving the company, it came as a shock to many, even Facebook itself — Instagram’s parent company was caught flat-footed without a prepared statement until the next day.

But perhaps the news shouldn’t have come as a complete surprise. Earlier this month, The Verge reported that Instagram was considering adding a “regram” feature, akin to a retweet, where users could easily share and spread posts they like. But Instagram’s founders have always been opposed to this idea, and for good reason: Such a feature would lend itself to the sort of rapid virality that is no doubt one of the worst parts of Twitter.

In other words, in their relentless quest for more engagement, Mark Zuckerberg and Co. have been well on the way to ruining Instagram for quite some time. And with the founders out of the way, it’s very likely the Instagram that users know and love will soon cease to exist entirely.

Details about Systrom and Krieger’s exit have started to leak out: It was apparently becoming harder for Instagram to operate as an independent entity within Facebook. But the core of the tension seems to be that the culture of the app was at odds with Facebook’s economic needs.”

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