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It’s Facebook, Not Instagram, That’s Flipping Twitter the Bird




By now you have heard about the latest dustup in the social media space where Instagram has essentially blocked users from sharing Instagram photos with Twitter Cards (at least in a way that is actually usable).

While everyone is saying this an Instagram v. Twitter think, let’s be real. Instagram is owned by Facebook after Mark Zuckerberg’s virtual solo purchase of the service before Facebook’s IPO. This is a real battle line being drawn between Facebook and Twitter and this could get ugly. Here’s how Forbes magazine puts it

Since Instagram got their new Facebook friend, the photo-sharing service has slowly distanced itself from Twitter. Today they unfriended them with news that Instagram integration had been disabled with Twitter Cards. Users can still share Instagram images there, but they look too large for the space provided and end up looking cropped. Competition has forced the situation, and there are now links that direct Twitter users to Instagram.com, which forces users to visit the Instagram website if they want to view images in their entirety.

So much for an open Internet where everyone can share everything with everyone. Facebook is establishing its kingdom and is starting to act more like how people accuse Google of acting.

Was this inevitable because of Facebook’s size and power? Will this signal more in-depth fragmentation of the online space moving forward? I say yes but that’s just at a gut level.

What’s your take on this move? Good for Facebook? Bad for Twitter? Or more importantly, good for social media users or another sign that the social media user is just forced to go along with the flow regardless of what’s in their best interest?

  • http://dataanxiety.tumblr.com/ Ellie Kesselman

    Greetings, Marketing Pilgrim!
    It is nice to see you again! I was reading today’s very decent Wired article about Facebook, Instagram and walled gardens. You are of course correct in that there is is this odd perceptual disconnect that many seem to have between Instagram’s product management and Facebook. Facebook bought Instagram, lock stock and barrel, over six months ago. They are effectively one and the same. Instagram is a Facebook product. It is so odd that ire about changes in Instagram “compatibility” or “cross-connectivity” with Twitter et. al. is not seen as a straightforward business decision on the part of Facebook. Instagram could be used across platforms in the past. There’s no reason it can’t any longer, other than management (i.e. Facebook) decisions that that is not what they want to do.

    I still have your wonderful button that you gave me permission to use on my website. It is buried somewhat deeply in my archive of posts http://dataanxiety.tumblr.com/post/4006914950/the-eject-icon-courtesy-of-the-marketing-pilgrim but should probably be recycled as it still retains the design qualities that I valued highly when I first saw it nearly two years ago. I found SEO Skeptic Aaron from your website as well, and I am grateful for that. Best wishes to you, and a prosperous new year ahead (for all of us, I pray).
    Regards, Ellie