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Book Catalog/Flickr (CC-BY)
Emails released by a British lawmaker show the exchange.
A member of British Parliament released a number of emails on Wednesday that show some of the inner workings of Facebook, including that Mark Zuckerberg was involved in a decision to cut off access for people to find friends on Vine, a now-defunct video-sharing app once owned by Twitter.
The emails, which are 250 pages long, were released as part of a lawsuit against Facebook. Damian Collins, the British lawmaker who released the documents, said they “raise important questions about how Facebook treats users data, their policies for working with app developers, and how they exercise their dominant position in the social media market.”
In one of the emails from 2013, it shows how Facebook handled the launch of Vine, a six-second video sharing app that would become extremely popular and was shuttered in 2017.
In the email and employee explains that in Vine you could find your friends on Facebook. They suggest cutting off Vine’s access to Facebook’s API.
In response, Zuckerberg wrote: “Yup, go for it.”
The email did not sit well with people online.
— melissa byrne (@mcbyrne) December 5, 2018
Facebook is utter garbage. I’ll take Vine coming back over Facebook any day. https://t.co/DvpLKxNCkm
— Christmas Field 🎄 (@mrcfield) December 5, 2018
So it looks like Facebook took aggressive measures to destroy Vine.
How do you all live with yourselves?
— Freddie’s Gato (@Freddiesgato) December 5, 2018
Facebook tried to squash Vine from day one by shutting down friends API access (pg 15 of doc; FB email 24 Jan 2013): https://t.co/O4qxmFneJd
— Hasan (@_hasanc) December 5, 2018
Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).