Social media giant Facebook on Friday acquired the GIF-sharing service GIPHY, which will now be a part of the Instagram team.
“By bringing Instagram and GIPHY together, we can make it easier for people to find the perfect GIFs and stickers in Stories and Direct. Both our services are big supporters of the creator and artist community, and that will continue,” Vishal Shah, VP of Product Facebook, said in a statement.
Facebook Buys Giphy
The cost, which Facebook and Giphy declined to disclose, was placed at around $400 million (roughly Rs. 3,035 crores) by news website Axios.
The announcement comes at a time when the largest social media network is under scrutiny from regulators over antitrust concerns. In 2015, Giphy rebuffed a Facebook offer, choosing instead to continue integrating its products with multiple social media platforms
Giphy will become part of Instagram, the photo-sharing site owned by Facebook. Its GIF library, which can integrate with other apps, will be further integrated into Instagram and other Facebook-owned apps, the companies said.
Alphabet’s Google acquired GIF platform Tenor integrated it into its image search function, which Miller said undermined the competitive market Giphy had created.
“Now, Facebook is here to pick up the wreckage, and become even more powerful,” she said.
A Facebook spokesman said Giphy’s current integrations with social platforms like Twitter, Snapchat, and ByteDance’s TikTok would not change.
The spokesman also said GIFs have no online tracking mechanisms such as pixels or cookies, a concern for privacy advocates wary of Facebook’s aggressive collection of personal data for use in targeted advertising.
Facebook’s blog post said 50 percent of Giphy’s traffic already comes from Facebook’s apps, with half of that coming from Instagram.
More specifically, Giphy would be part of the Instagram team and will make it easier for users to share GIFs in stories and private messages. And as for Giphy users, things will remain as they are for the time being. No changes would be made to the platform itself.