While Meta is slated to launch its new social media platform "Threads" in the U.S. and U.K. on Thursday, a company spokesperson told Ireland's Data Protection Commission (DPC) service that it will not be available to the rest of Europe "at this point."
According to a report from Independent.ie, the tech giant has not yet prepared for a wider EU rollout due to strict data privacy requirements.
The news also comes after a court ruling issued by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) requires Facebook to obtain consent from users within the EU before running personalized ads.
The Irish regulator has also prevented the parent company from running ads on its messaging platform Whatsapp if the ads use data from a user's Facebook or Instagram account.
This poses an issue for the new Meta-owned platform, as it requires data from its users including their health, finances, location, browsing histories, and more.
It remains unclear whether Meta plans to launch Threads to the rest of Europe anytime soon.
The Zuckerberg-owned app appeared in the Apple App Store on Tuesday, just two days ahead of its public release. The tech giant also created a countdown website leading up to its launch.
Like Twitter, Threads will be a “text-based conversation app” with a very similar user interface, according to screengrabs that have surfaced online.
"Threads is where communities come together to discuss everything from the topics you care about today to what'll be trending tomorrow," reads its App Store description.
The news of the launch comes shortly after Twitter-owner Elon Musk announced a limit to the number of tweets a user can see daily. According to Musk, this was done to address “extreme levels of data scraping.”
To address extreme levels of data scraping & system manipulation, we’ve applied the following temporary limits:— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 1, 2023
- Verified accounts are limited to reading 6000 posts/day
- Unverified accounts to 600 posts/day
- New unverified accounts to 300/day
Many Twitter users have since criticized the move, with many against Musk’s push for the app’s paid subscription service, Twitter Blue.
Meanwhile, Meta’s Threads will reportedly remain a free-to-use app with no restrictions around how many posts a user can make and see.
In a supposed jab at Zuckerberg, Musk weighed in on the new Meta-owned app, responding to a tweet that detailed the new app’s data requirements.
“Thank goodness they’re so sanely run,” he replied.