January was the longest year ever, amirite guys? Now all that’s over, we can finally say goodbye to toxic things like Whole 30 oversharers and, if we’re lucky, terrible products from tech giants.
I love writing about tech companies’ failed attempts at ~cool~ new products. Honestly, it’s become a personal hobby, or, dare I say, delight. Nothing warms my ice cold heart like seeing Google Glass, Google+, and the Facebook “Moments” app go up in flames.
Wait, hold up… there was a Facebook Moments app? What the heck is (or was) the Moments app?
In case if you didn’t know like most people, here’s what you need to know:
Moments was originally created in 2015 as a way for Facebook users to privately share photos outside of the standard Facebook platform. The app implemented machine learning and facial recognition technology to help group photos, and then “recommended” who to share the photos with based off who was in the picture.
Get off my lawn.
If there’s anything we learned in 2018, it’s that we can totally trust Facebook with very private and personal information!
And I know what you’re thinking: why would this crappier and creepier version of Google Photos be necessary? Spoiler alert: it’s not.
In a moment of temporary sanity, Facebook announced it’s shutting down Moments and the app in its entirety on February 25th, citing a notable lack of downloads.
Here’s the interesting bit, though: no other reasons were mentioned like security or privacy concerns, and they insisted it’s pulling the plug only because not enough people downloaded it.
Considering Facebook bullied hundreds of thousands of users into downloading the app, so much so that in 2016 it was #1 in the App Store for several days, do we really believe the “no user base” excuse?
What else is going on under the hood of Moments that isn’t being revealed?
Given the recent controversies surrounding Facebook’s lack of data transparency and unethical decision making in this realm of personal data, I have a hunch something else might be behind this sudden “no downloads” rhetoric.
Only time, and perhaps another amusing congressional hearing, will tell.
In the off chance you’re one of the seven people with photos on Moments, you’ve been forewarned, and make sure to delete all of your data from it in case if Zuck pulls another Cambridge Analytica.