Already on Threads? This is what you are giving away – News Block

The new Threads app from Meta, the social networking giant’s alternative to Twitter, has attracted some 70 million users since its debut on Wednesday night, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said Friday.

Part of the appeal may be that users can easily sign up via their Instagram account, and log in, with a single button, making the new text-based conversational platform an extension of the more established one that primarily features photos and videos.

But the tight integration between Meta-owned apps can also serve to remind users that they might be giving away the same personal data that is collected from many of Instagram’s 2.3 billion monthly active users and those on other Meta platforms, such as Facebook.

Meta’s privacy policy says the app may collect and share information about purchases, location, contacts, “financial information,” health and fitness, and browsing and search history, and then share that data with advertisers.

Additionally, the Threads and Instagram apps, according to Apple’s App Store, “may include handling” of “sensitive information,” which could include race, sexual orientation, and religion.

Meta is hoping to drive people away from Twitter now that its owner, Elon Musk, recently announced restrictions, including limits on the number of tweets users can see each day.

‘Data Collection’

“As Twitter faces turbulence over controversial policy changes, Threads seems to have come along at just the right time. However, if people are looking for an alternative to Twitter that respects their data privacy and the right to civil discourse, they will have to keep looking, “ social media and online privacy expert Mark Weinstein told CBC News.

“Like other Meta products like Facebook and Instagram, it looks like Threads will earn revenue through data collection and surveillance capitalism,” he said.

He said several “clones” of Twitter have emerged over the years, but none have broken his stronghold. That’s because of what’s known as the network effect, which means that a social media platform is seen to have more value the more people join it.

By integrating two platforms, Threads has a real chance of surpassing the popularity of Twitter, he said, “albeit while collecting massive data about its users.”

A user can manage some settings in Threads by tapping “profile” in the bottom right, then “settings” in the top right, Instagram says on its help center web page.

other warnings

For now, only Instagram users can create a Threads account.

Another detail is that you cannot delete a Threads account without also deleting your Instagram account.

“You can deactivate your Threads profile at any time, but your Threads profile can only be deleted by deleting your Instagram account,” Meta says in a supplemental privacy policy.

If users object to the two-for-one dynamic, some tech company websites recommend creating a separate Instagram account for Threads that can be easily abandoned.

However, that may not be a priority for people with a high number of users. With the new mobile-only app, users can get a list of Instagram accounts they follow and then tell Threads to follow them, or request it for private accounts, once they join the new app.

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