In fact, according to Facebook’s press release, “50% of GIPHY’s traffic comes from the Facebook family of apps, half of that from Instagram alone.”
It seems GIPHY will remain somewhat autonomous after the deal. Facebook states that New York-based GIPHY “will continue to operate its [own] library.”
“People will still be able to upload GIFs; developers and API partners will continue to have the same access to GIPHY’s APIs; and GIPHY’s creative community will still be able to create great content.”
As a result of the deal Facebook stock surged in trading on Friday and Monday, nearly erasing its COVID slump and coming within striking distance of its all-time high.
For the most part, these companies have yet to comment (or declined to comment), while some have issued vague responses like this one from Slack VP Brian Elliott:
“Slack is committed to protecting user and company data. GIPHY doesn’t receive any information about users or even companies using the GIPHY for Slack integration, and only sees Slack usage of the GIPHY API in aggregate.”
Slack’s allusions to privacy echo broad concerns that many have about the deal.
Facebook has received much negative press in recent years for its handling of privacy. Even if GIPHY still operates as it did in the past, could Facebook track users? It seems unlikely, as it currently stands.
According to The Verge, “there are no tracking pixels, cookies, or any other embedded user tracking mechanisms in GIPHY's GIFs or stickers.”
The app Telegram reports that the GIPHY API only sees search terms, not any user data.
Still, the integration of the world’s largest social media empire with one of the internet’s most popular content generation tools could have implications for billions of users.
This developing story will continue to unfold in the weeks ahead. We will report back as further details become available.