Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, has paid an advertising and content creation agency to discredit TikTok. The revelation comes from the pages of the Washington Post which obtained the emails exchanged between the agency, Targeted Victory, and the giant of Mark Zuckerberg.
The campaign – according to the newspaper – includes publishing editorials in major news outlets, promoting stories about alleged TikTok trends, to attract journalists and politicians and defeat its biggest competitor owned by Chinese ByteDance. An email reported by the Washington Post states that Targeted Victory needs to “get the message across that while Meta is the current punching bag, TikTok is the real threat, especially as a foreign-owned app that is # 1. in sharing the data used by young adolescents “. Targeted Victory, when asked by the newspaper, refused to answer, saying only that she has been representing Meta for several years and is “proud of the work done”.
The emails, observes the Washington Post, show how far Meta goes to counter TikTok, the multibillion dollar rival that has become one of the most downloaded apps in the world, often surpassing even the popular Facebook and Instagram. In an investigation published last year thanks to the revelations of the former Facebook employee Frances Haugen – which caused discussions as the damage of the Meta apps on adolescents had been leaked – a data that was not comforting for Zuckerberg had also come out: the Meta researchers stated that teens spent “2-3 times more time” on TikTok than on Instagram and that Facebook’s popularity among young people had plummeted.
I have been working in the news industry for over 10 years now and I have worked for some of the biggest news websites in the world. My focus has always been on entertainment news, but I also cover a range of other topics. I am currently an author at Global happenings and I love writing about all things pop-culture related.