Threads, the new Meta app, is leading to debates on the internet regarding the usefulness of so many apps. Users started to wonder if all these applications were really of any value if they were only copying one another. Arguments started after Meta’s intention was revealed to make a normal alternative to Twitter, which has experienced numerous changes after Elon Musk acquired the app. Behind this statement, the leader of Twitter proposed a battle with Zuckerberg.

But despite the impressive increase in users, Threads faces some obstacles regarding data safety in the EU. It is not the first time Meta has faced such issues with European regulations, as the company received a fine of $1.3 Billion for privacy infringements. The European Union’s data protection regulators found that Meta wasn’t processing European data according to the law.

This is also the case with Threads.

What is Threads, and what is its purpose?

Threads has been created by the Instagram team and shares similar features, so users can simply connect to the new app through their Instagram account. But Threads is intended to be a better version of Twitter, with the possibility of sharing text updates, photos, and videos and engaging in public conversations. What’s unique about Threads is that users’ Instagram followers and following accounts will be directly transferred to the new Meta application, so they’ll benefit from an updated version of Instagram.

Threads also includes compatibility with interoperable networks, like WordPress or Tumblr, enhancing users’ experiences. The company had this feature to allow developers to come up with innovative ideas on how the app can develop.

Why is Threads not complying with European data safety guidelines?

Meta had no choice but to delay the app launch since they needed to clear out any uncertainties regarding personal data use. It seems like Threads is late to the party regarding EU regulations, as the social media group and the bloc have to go through a series of negotiations and discussions. The applications will share user data on different interoperable platforms with Threads, for which the company needs clarification from the European Commission.

What should Threads have done before its release?

Considering its part of such a significant company, Threads may have held all the previous experience from apps, for which it should’ve been better prepared to face the challenges of entering different areas of the world. It’s still unclear whether the app will become available within the European Union in the future, but what’s for sure is that Threads needs to clarify its objectives and approaches.

With a little background research and proper methodology development, Threads could maintain the focus on the content while executing efficient marketing research. But this stage should’ve been addressed by analysing data without compromising it, which seems to be where the app is going.

Threads had significant success being tied to Instagram and Meta and positioning itself as a Twitter competitor. However, this is not enough for the app to succeed in the long run, despite reaching 100 million users in only a few days. The fastest-growing app in history has achieved this roaring success, mostly organic, so the company didn’t have to spend too much on advertisement.

The new Threads trend might have a bigger impact on media than we think

Although from the user perspective, Threads is only a blend between Twitter and Instagram, the platform’s impact on media and digital marketing might trigger some great things for companies and content creators.

That’s because it allows the connection between multiple platforms, which makes it easier for influencers and businesses to coordinate their content planning and information. This may also provide more improvement opportunities in the online environment.

Threads may influence different marketing areas. For example, digital marketing for businesses will have to develop their Instagram performance to have similar results on Threads if they choose to be present on it. At the same time, Threads provides multiple opportunities for content creation ―some say it may even bring blogging back in a newer and modern version.

Threads may even be revolutionising SEO and digital PR since the brands will have innovative tools for building communities and connecting with influencers easily. This helps with data and audience connections that will be used for paid social campaigns.

Still, Threads will have to comply with GDPR

GDPR is a recent law that addresses data protection in the European Union. The regulation imposes strict rules on businesses regarding the use of customer personal data. If companies don’t abide by the law, they’ll be considerably fined ―Meta’s penalty is the biggest in history.

GDPR tackles numerous aspects of data handling, such as accountability, security, consent and privacy rights. Briefly, the law states that customers need to be informed by companies regarding how their personal information will be used. Only after consenting to the organisation’s guidelines can the company process data, but it must ensure that it performs the activity lawfully, transparently and only for the specified purposes.

Meta is already known to have violated the GDPR since it has been discovered that it was using personal data from Facebook to deliver it to US servers, which is a massive amount of data. The issue was considered a law conflict and solved after the fine. But it’s unclear whether Threads will take the same path or transfer data similarly. What’s sure is that users are giving their consent on the app to share data with other platforms upon registering, which needs to be discussed with more transparency and accountability.

If Threads can’t provide a better law framework, it may be possible not to enter the European market. While this may not be such a problem for customers, smaller companies might’ve wanted to benefit from the app’s features.

Bottom line

Threads have been trending on the internet as a competitor of Twitter and the extension of Instagram. With new and old features, the app seems to appeal to businesses the most, as the number of users constantly increases. But the issue of data privacy is hindering its penetration into the European market due to GDPR.