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Meta Tests Cross-Posting Between Facebook and Threads

Yeah, I wouldn’t say that I love this concept.

This week, Meta has begun a new test or cross-posting between Facebook and Threads, with some users now being promoted to share their Facebook updates to the new, Twitter-like app.

Threads crossposting

As you can see in this example, posted by app researcher Ljiljana Grujicic, those in the test pool are now seeing a toggle to turn on Threads cross-posting. Meta has confirmed to TechCrunch that the option is in limited testing on iOS, and will apply to text and link posts (not, apparently, video updates). It’s also not being tested in EU at this stage.

That’ll make it much easier to share your updates with more people, but the bigger question is: “Do people really want to share the same content across Facebook and Threads?”

Also: “Do Threads users want to read it?”

The test is part of the broader cross-pollination of content that Meta’s looking to facilitate, with users already able to cross-post between IG and Facebook. Threads updates are also easily re-shared to Instagram (and vice versa), while Facebook also has a Threads highlights unit that it’s been jamming into Facebook feeds.

Threads on Facebook

All of this enables Meta to get maximum mileage from the content that users post to its apps, but as I’ve noted previously, I’m not sure that further integration between Threads and its other apps is truly beneficial to Threads’ growth.

The profiles that people follow (or “followed”) on Twitter, for example would be a lot different to those that they engage with on IG, and likely even more varied again on Facebook. Each platform has a distinct purpose, and it feels like Threads should be separating itself, as opposed to further entwining its functions and algorithms with these other apps.

It’ll also lead to lazy posting, with users re-sharing replicated updates far and wide, which could also degrade the Threads experience.

But Meta says that it has a plan, and a pathway to building Threads into the next billion-user platform, by focusing on positivity, and AI recommended updates, and getting more and more content into its system to keep people engaged.

But I’m not so sure.

I know why Meta thinks that it’s on the right path, with recommendations now taking up more and more slots in user feeds, and subsequently driving steady increases in overall engagement. But Threads, at least in theory, is a different thing, and it should be viewed as such in order to maximize is value and popularity.

But maybe I’m wrong. Meta has all the data, and years of insight into what drives social platform growth, clearly, it would be in the best position to understand what it needs to do on this front.

I’m just not sure that Threads users are looking for more funny videos, more entertainment news, and now, more cross-posted updates from FB.

Really, it feels like Threads is taking a gossip magazine approach, when most users, seeking a Twitter replacement, probably want more of a newspaper-type feel. 

But again, maybe Meta’s just had enough of the angst. And maybe Zuck and Co know something we don’t.

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