Facebook will let you to post direct links to the dildo retailer Bad Dragon — at least until it’s spotted and reported — but it won’t let you post links to rival social media website Tsu.co on any of its platforms, including Messenger and Instagram.
Tsu.co is a content sharing platform much like Facebook that allows its users to share messages, photos, and videos with their followers. Unlike Facebook, it is currently invite-only.
More importantly, Tsu incentivises users to share content and invite more friends to the network by funnelling 90 per cent of ad revenues back to its users. Users receive 45 per cent of ad revenue generated by their content, and a further 45 per cent is shared with friends who invited them to the platform.
Tsu sought to overcome the market penetration of older social networks by allowing its users to simultaneously post to Tsu and other platforms like Facebook. Until the recent ban, Tsu users were frequently posting on both platforms.
On September 25, Facebook banned mentions of Tsu from its platform. Users attempting to post links to the site are met with a message informing them that they are unable to post their desired link. According to CNN, Facebook also went back and deleted over 1 million posts that included links to Tsu. This led to the work of many Facebook users being effectively erased.
A Facebook spokesman told CNN that Tsu’s model of incentivised crossposting to Facebook encouraged spam. “We do not allow developers to incentivize content sharing on our platform because it encourages spammy sharing,” said the spokesperson.
However, Tsu contends that it was not breaking Facebook’s terms of service, as it does not incentivise posting to Facebook specifically. According to CNN, they also claim that Facebook is trying to “kill off competition.”
Tsu is by no means the first competitor to challenge Facebook. Other attempts have been made, including the crowdfunded site Zurker and the considerably hyped ad-free network Ello. However, none have gained enough traction in the market to pose a serious threat to Facebook.