Meta looking into new social platform that could rival Twitter

FILE - A car passes Facebook's new Meta logo on a sign at the company headquarters on Oct. 28, 2021, in Menlo Park, Calif. The latest folding smartphones, immersive metaverse experiences, AI-powered chatbot avatars and other eye-catching technology are set to wow visitors at the annual MWC wireless trade fair. The four-day show, also known as Mobile World Congress, kicks off Monday in a vast Barcelona conference center. It's the world’s biggest and most influential meeting for the mobile tech industry. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar, File)

Meta, Facebook’s parent company, is looking into a new social media platform that could potentially rival Twitter, as the company remains in turmoil under CEO Elon Musk’s leadership.

“We’re exploring a standalone decentralized social network for sharing text updates,” a Meta spokesperson said in a statement to The Hill.

“We believe there’s an opportunity for a separate space where creators and public figures can share timely updates about their interests,” they added.

Decentralized social media networks, which typically allow users to form separate communities and establish their own rules and guidelines, have grown in popularity in the wake of Musk’s chaotic takeover of Twitter.  

Mastodon, one such decentralized network, exploded in popularity after the Tesla CEO acquired Twitter last fall. It grew from less than 500,000 active users in late October to more than 2.5 million users in early December, spiking each time Musk made controversial decisions, according to The Guardian.

However, some have found the decentralized network too complicated to serve as a sufficient alternative to Twitter, with the number of Mastodon users falling to about 1.8 million users in early January.

Meta has followed Twitter’s lead on several issues since Musk’s takeover, launching a verified subscription service similar to Twitter Blue and restoring former President Trump’s access to his accounts on Facebook and Instagram after he was reinstated on Twitter.