Threads Reaches 100 Million Membership in Record Time! - Digital Ratha
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Threads Reaches 100 Million Membership in Record Time!

Threads Reaches 100 Million Membership in Record Time!

As expected, The new Threads app of Meta has now become the fastest-growing app of all time.

The much-anticipated choice that rivals Twitter was launched a day earlier than expected on Wednesday last week.

It quickly rushed to 30 million sign-ups within 24 hours of release. Its number rose to 50 million just hours later and then 70 million within two days.

Now, Threads has crossed the 100 million sign-up markers, making it one of the quickest apps to get 100 million members within a short time.

Quiver Quantative is tracking Threads account numbers shown on Instagram pages. The app crossed the 100 million sign-up marker early Monday morning.

The rapid growth of Threads beats out even ChatGPT to take the fastest-growing app title, with the ChatGPT app reaching 100 million users two months earlier this year.

So it beats it by quite a comfortable margin. Although contextually, the situation is a lot different now than it has been for several other apps regarding broad-ranging mobile adoption and data access.

While Meta is also using the network effects of Instagram to amplify Threads sign-up, it is also worth noting that ‘sign-ups’ and ‘active users’ are two different measurements.

And while Threads has succeeded in getting millions of people to create an account, they still don’t have any insight into how deeply the users are engaged with it and how much time they invest in the app.

But even getting them there in the first place is an important first step and milestone. And when you also consider that Twitter has around 250 million daily activities, Threads has gathered so much momentum so quickly, foretells well of its capacity as a challenger app.

If that is what it is.

Interestingly, Instagram chief Adam Mosseri has noted that the discussion they want to encourage in Threads differs slightly from Twitter’s focus on news and current events.

So rather than courting journalists and news outlets, as Facebook has done in the past, Meta is now looking to continue its gradual shift away from news and political discussion.

It is trying to focus more on positive human interaction and, seemingly, more light entertainment.

So how do you do that in an algorithmic sense?

It will be a difficult challenge because the most engaging content has historically been posts that trigger emotional responses.

The emotions that are most likely to spark virality are anger and joy. And while joy is perfect and becomes the focus in this context, anger is easier to illicit, which is at least part of why you have seen the media landscape become so divisive and partisan.

Outlets look to generate more attention and drive more traffic by tapping into this element.

If you want to go viral, provoke a strong response. Historically, it has been the best way to drive social platform engagement.

So how does Meta counter this and usher Threads users towards more positive interactions?

Mosseri has not provided a roadmap, but he has said they are seeking to amplify content that people are likelier to share with friends than with the general public.

He has also noted that the platform will not discourage or down-rank news or politics.

He further stated that Meta would not count them the way it did in the past. Moreover, he says that if they are honest, they will be too quick to promise too much to the industry on Facebook in the early 2010s, and it would be a mistake to repeat that.

Mosseri refers to Meta’s constant on-again and off-again relationship with news publishers.

First, push them to build a Facebook following, then take away their reach, urging them to make video a priority, then de-prioritizing video ranking, creating a separate News tab, and then shutting it down.

Given its scale and reach, each of the decisions of Meta in this respect can have a very big impact. According to Mosseri, the company now believes that it was a mistake to use that influence to its own end.

Furthermore, the broader negative impacts that it has had on publishers and perception of Meta’s business and negative user experience.

The Cambridge Analytica scandal was a major turning point in this respect, highlighting the influence that Facebook can have on people’s responses and how Facebook, with data on billions of users, has the potential to sway political action.

It prompted Zuck and Co. to take this element more seriously. Since then, Meta has gradually been evolving in its approach to reduce the presence of politics within its main feeds and re-align the engagement around entertainment.

TikTok has also helped to shift the perspective of Meta here. It shows that users are now less keen to hear from friends and family.

They are now more interested in using social platforms as discovery tools, especially Meta.

Social sharing behaviors have evolved to the point where more friend and family discussion is now occurring in private DM chat groups.

It is the opposite of users sharing to the main feed, which effectively transforms social apps into entertainment feeders, with their algorithms now showing you more content that you might be interested in from sources you don’t already follow.

It is the main change in approach that Mosseri is pointing out here. News and politics will no longer be a focus because Meta does not benefit from that engagement in the same way that it can from highlighting the most entertaining content from across its apps.

News posts will still gain traction and remain a part of the broader discussion, but Meta no longer feels the need to make this a specific focus.

It can live without people provoking each other with divisive political takes.

But again, it won’t be easy to reduce the amplification of the emotional drivers at play, though Mosseri seems confident that Meta has at least some solutions in the pocket.

Speaking of solutions, Mosseri has also pointed to some coming developments for the Threads app that are still in their very early stages.

So, Improved search is coming beyond the current basic user search option.

Threads will have active hashtags that might or might not be necessary for a modern social app due to its algorithmic matching and text ID. But they are coming.

Yes, there will be a separate following feed, so you don’t have to go through all those recommendations if you do not want to.

Meta is still working on decentralized elements that enable graph syncing and portability.

It also explores an auto-archive option to keep your profile fresh and avoid negative associations with its past and ill-advised Threads posts.

Mosseri seems lukewarm on adding in-app DMs. Some users suspect it because if it were to do so, Meta would prefer to link that option back into Messenger/WhatsApp/Instagram Direct.

Meta has been working to integrate all of its messaging tools into a single platform, so adding another separate one seems counterintuitive.

Mosseri says that all of these elements are in development but also informs that they will take some time to develop. But now that Threads is the fastest-growing app of all time.

Meta gives it its full focus as it builds on that early hype.

So what does this mean for Twitter? And how will Twitter respond to the rapid rise of the new app?

Well, aside from taking legal action over potential violations of its IP, there is nothing more that Twitter can do right now. It can only hope that its network effects and approach will appeal more to its audience.

Twitter chief Elon Musk has made a strong stand on free speech and allows more discussion types in his app. It looks set to become a differentiator between the two as Instagram sticks with Meta’s broader approach to content moderation.

It also, incidentally, ports over verification info from IG that remains a valuable element in interpreting content in its apps.

Will users prefer the ‘free and open’ approach of Twitter?

It will make news and politics a central focus, or will the more entertaining alignment of Threads; if it can get it right, it will win the race.

One thing should be noted: several journalists, whom Musk has been heavily critical, are increasingly keen to stop posting to his app due to his attacks.

Elon seems to think that discrediting the ‘mainstream media’ and slating writers he does not agree with is a pathway to a better information ecosystem within the Twittersphere.

But he might have underrated these journalists’ value to his app. Their audiences will follow if they go, which could spark a much bigger habitual shift.

It is also worth noting that Mosseri has explained the situation regarding being theoretically unable to delete the Threads app without deleting your IG account.

So you can deactivate your Threads account, and Meta is looking to separate the two profile types in the future.

You can click here to learn more about Meta’s threads and other social media platforms.

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