Thoughts on Facebook's Acquisition of Instagram

09 April 2012 — Manhattan, Kansas

That's why we're committed to building and growing Instagram independently. Millions of people around the world love the Instagram app and the brand associated with it, and our goal is to help spread this app and brand to even more people.

Mark Zuckerberg

Assuming this acquisition goes through, I really hope that Facebook sticks by this. I am by no means a heavy Instragram user, but one of the biggest draws for me as a user was the independent nature of Instragram. I love the simple interface and the fact that my “feed” wasn’t clogged with endless bits of trivia about my connections. I could see the photos a smaller group of friends was uploading from moments in their life without being bombarded by political rants, Happy Birthday messages, news articles just read, and all the rest of the deluge of information that is my Facebook feed.

I’m glad to see that they are at least saying that they plan to keep it a separate, independent ecosystem. Hopefully they do exactly that. It could be a sign that Facebook is beginning to realize that not everyone wants everything they do on the social web to end up on Facebook. That some people enjoy a little vacation from the blue F. Tying Instagram a little more to Facebook will no doubt increase the (already large) userbase. Tie it too tightly though, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of the earliest adopters, who loved it for its independence and focus, start to drop off. I doubt the latter would make a dent in the numbers given the amount of new users that we’ll likely see. It will be interesting to see what happens to the “Instagram Landscape” over the next 6 months or so.

Of course, no matter what happens, this is awesome news for the Instagram team. After two years of hard work and, in my opinion, a laser-like focus on delivering an awesome user experience, they are being rewarded for their blood, sweat, and tears. As an aspiring entrepreneur, it’s awesome to see someone else’s plans work out and inspiring to see it happen in such a big way. Congratulations to the entire Instagram team and best of luck at Facebook.

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