Facebook Hires Vine’s Former Leader to Counter TikTok's Growth
Facebook(NASDAQ: FB) owns the world's biggest social network, and its family of apps -- including its core platform, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp -- reaches 2.7 billion monthly active users (MAUs). However, ByteDance's TikTok, which amassed over 500 million MAUs in the past five years, is becoming a thorn in Facebook's side. It also hired Vanessa Pappas, YouTube's global head of creative insights, as TikTok's first general manager in the U.S. To counter ByteDance, Facebook launched a TikTok clone called Lasso last year, but team leader Brady Voss resigned shortly after the app's launch. Facebook will likely kill off Lasso, but it's still cooking up fresh ways to counter TikTok with its newly created NPE (New Product Experimentation) Team, which recently hired former Vine GM Jason Toff as its product management director. What does Facebook's NPE unit do? Facebook also let its photo-sharing app Moments run from 2015 to 2019 before pulling the plug, and Lasso could soon join that graveyard of failed apps. Therefore the launch of NPE marks a return to Facebook's older (and oft-vilified) mantra of "moving fast and breaking things" on a more limited scale in a quarantined incubator.