Moves app, which is one of my all time favorite fitness and lifelogging apps, has been acquired by Facebook. Here is my reaction:
— Michael Truskowski (@truskowski) April 24, 2014
And that is mostly how everyone feels to be honest. In fact, many tweets to the Moves account contain the words app deleted.1 Just like with the Oculus acquisition, I ask again at what point Facebook starts to worry that everyone’s initial reaction to this kind of news is fear, anger, and hate (and we know where that leads).
I certainly cannot begrudge the developers. It is an excellent app. They clearly worked hard, and I am sure they made out very well financially as a result. But I love independent apps, and really fear they will be chewed up and destroyed by the Facebook machine. Honestly I worry less about privacy here, more that an app I love and use daily is in danger of becoming abandonware. This happens all the time.
I cannot help but think we as users are partially to blame here. We don’t want to pay for any apps, and are insanely fickle with the ones we do use. This pretty much breeds the kind of acquisition-bait culture we now see in software. The only business plan you can have is to give away your service and hope to either become big enough to be acquired, or (much rarer) become the next acquirer looking to crush any potential rival. Who knows if Facebook even wants a fitness app, but they have to have one, otherwise someone else will.
- I don’t intend to do any such thing. Taking their promise at face value that they are remaining independent, for now at least. ↩