Newly released emails In letters from 2012 April Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and other executives appear to have been frustrated by the slow internal prototyping and appreciated the benefits of fast copying and iteration in smaller apps like Pinterest.
Zuckerberg is reported to be talking about a meeting with the founders of China’s social networking program Renren. “There is this strong culture of gluing fast cloning and developing many different products in China,” he wrote. “Seeing all this and the pace at which it seems that new mobile apps are coming out from other companies makes me think we are moving very slowly. … I wonder what we could do to move much faster. ”
The messages were released on Wednesday as a probe for the Court̵7;s Judicial Committee.
Other employees, some of whose names have been corrected, agreed that “copying is faster than innovation”, even though they were worried that this would give Facebook a bad reputation in the industry. “We spend a lot of time on products and iterations on products that aren’t used,” one person said. “If you gave a top-down instruction, copy things like Pinterest or game dynamics to Foursquare … I’m sure [a] a very small team of engineers, a [product manager], and the designer would do it very quickly. “
“I would like to be much more aggressive and energetic in copying competitors at the interface / last mile level,” said another. “Let’s copy (also called the super kit) Pinterest!”
In the last email The letter compared this approach with the slow development of two domestic products known as Snap and Roger. There’s not much information about them, but Roger apparently was a messaging system similar to WhatsApp, which Facebook acquired in 2014, and Snap was a potential competitor to Instagram. “We spend a lot of time ensuring that our design conforms to traditions or parameters to ensure future security. “I noticed that something stopped us from Roger and other projects,” the e-mail said. In the letter. “Startups have the best of both worlds: [they] siphon graphics to create a new system … and that allows them to create a different product experience. “
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) suggested at a meeting yesterday that Facebook had used the threat of product cloning to encourage smaller competitors to sell, including Instagram, which was acquired a few days after these emails. Sending emails. “Has Facebook ever threatened to clone another company’s products in an attempt to acquire that company as well?” She asked. “A congressional woman, not that I remember,” Zuckerberg replied.
Since then, Facebook has built a reputation for cloning apps. It was launched with program features that replicate the functions of Snapchat, including 2016. Instagram stories, series. She released, then recently closed, a TikTok-inspired program called Lasso and an Pinterest-type program called Hobbi. This exchange provides some possible justifications for these decisions and describes an alternative approach that Facebook has decided to simply not work.