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Apps and social media come and go, and sometimes it is tricky to figure out which ones will manage to go the distance and become a lasting sensation. Even some social media giants, like MySpace, have gone the way of the dinosaur when something shinier and more popular came along — which in this example was Facebook, on account of it completely supplanting MySpace’s former dominance.
Even now, the social media landscape is not yet static, and Meta’s freshly minted and latest offering of Threads aims to take a chunk out of Twitter’s domain. As a component of Meta’s empire, Threads is a Twitter-like social media platform that requires one to have an Instagram account to access. Much like Twitter, Threads’ focus is on small snippets, comments, and buzz-worthy articles that generate tons of chatter.
However, before making the plunge into a new social media universe, there are several considerations and caveats one should be aware of before making the transition.
Signing up for Threads requires a linked Instagram account
Of course, whenever you have something new and popular, the initial reaction might be to go out and immediately sign up for Threads to check it out. However, doing so with Threads requires an Instagram account; and if you find yourself not particularly interested in Meta’s Twitter clone, your Instagram account remains connected to Threads anyway. Should you want to delete your Threads account, your Instagram account will go with it, which could be a huge problem for some. Per Instagram head Adam Mosseri, there is a way to deactivate and hide your Threads account by making it private, but it doesn’t delete the account and content associated with it.
If you happened to sign up for Threads by just making a throwaway Instagram account, this issue won’t be much of a problem. However, for those of you who have invested time and effort into cultivating a rocking Instagram account, signing up for Threads is something you should definitely weigh, since unsubscribing and deleting your Threads account comes with a heavy cost deleting your Instagram account as well.
[Featured image by Santeri Viinamäki via Wikimedia Commons | Cropped and scaled | CC BY-SA 4.0]
Threads may have some bugs because its new
Another issue to consider with joining Threads is that the app and network is quite new. Meta’s Facebook and Instagram have long been major players in the social media game, and generally one shouldn’t have to worry about the overall stability of Threads. However, at the end of the day, Threads is still a brand-new app. Even the most robust application will have more then a couple of quirks when it is first released, and Threads hasn’t even been out for a week.
In other words, even though Threads is a product of Meta, there will more than likely be a few jitters and hang-ups as the bugs are worked out of the system. Some reported app slowdown and even crashes when loading posts from followers and more, as well as the general lack of a “following” feed that makes the home screen cluttered and busy. Plus, since there’s only iPhone and Android apps available (and no web interface), users will have to make due for now.
This may not be a huge problem for some, but for others, having the Threads application stop working or become unresponsive would probably be infuriating. That isn’t to say that Threads is an unstable mess, though waiting a week or two might be a good idea for those that are looking for a consistent social media experience.
[Featured image by Markus Spiske via Wikimedia Commons | Cropped and scaled | CC0 1.0]
Threads lacks the user base of other social media
Sure, Threads had over 30 million people sign up the first night it was available, but this is still a far cry from the numbers that Meta’s other platforms like Facebook and Instagram have accrued. Facebook has well over 2 billion users, as well as Instagram. To put things in perspective, Twitter has around 350 million users. With this in mind, the numbers that Threads is currently obtaining can be both a boon and a negative, depending on how you look at it.
Even though Threads is certainly gaining in popularity, there still isn’t nearly as many people as the other behemoth social media outlets. In addition, the more people that rush Threads can create an erratic experience with the massive influx of users, making it harder to curate your feed.
On the flip side, if Threads’ meteoric rise tapers off, there won’t be nearly enough people to make the service interesting or long-lasting. You may quickly notice that many of your favorite people and organizations have not yet made the transition to Threads. It might be worth waiting a little and seeing how the proverbial chips fall on Threads’ user base.
[Featured image by Solen Feyissa via Wikimedia Commons | Cropped and scaled | CC BY-SA 2.0]
Threads is allowed to collect a ton of personal data
One of the biggest problems when it comes to signing up and joining Threads is one that is generally associated with almost all social media usage — the issue of privacy. Meta has long been embroiled in controversy when it comes to how the massive company handles privacy, data, and advertisements, and it would be naïve to think that Threads is anything different.
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