Facebook Acquires Gif Sharing Platform

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Facebook Acquires Gift Sharing Platform

Giphy has finally become one of Facebook’s system for data collection. 

On Friday the Facebook team announced to the whole world their plans to acquire a gif sharing platform known as Giphy. This hosting service and GIF search engine is reportedly going to cost them a whooping 400 million dollars.

There is an important feature which is incorporated into Giphy that is not very known to the public. This is the fact that every single search and GIF you send with this platform acts as a ‘beacon’ which can be used to track your activities with the image. It equally tracks all the feelings and opinions which the image is used to express all across the internet. 

Facebook Acquires Gift Sharing Platform

There is a special format which is used on GIFs from Giphy and this makes such images load much faster. There is also an embedded tiny JavaScript which shows the company the places where such images are loaded. There is also a tracking identifier which trails all your activities with the image across the web. 

Giphy is a big win for Facebook for two reasons. To start with, Giphy already gets over 50% of its traffic from Facebook. Again, acquiring this would give Facebook the opportunity to spy into other apps and websites across the web which they would ordinarily not have access to when Giphy images are used with them.

The advantage this holds for Facebook is that they can now better understand user behaviors and activities. This would be very helpful to Facebook in adapting and formatting ads for individuals. This is so since the company can now understand search intents both within and beyond its own networks. 

How Does Giphy Track Images?
Facebook Acquires Gift Sharing Platform

Actually, Facebook is not the first ad company which has acquired a gif platform. In 2008, Google bought over a gif network known as Tenor. Tenor used to be an arch-rival for Giphy. The details of the transaction were not made known to the public. Tenor is now embedded in all products from Google. This includes Gboard default Android keyboard. With this Google tracks user intents and activities. 

Giphy spys on other networks very easily in that it is embedded even in iOS keyboard and the Twitter network. That goes a long way to suggest that Facebook is definitely going to use this network to spy into the wider internet.

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