Facebook announced that it will acquire GIPHY, the leading provider of animated GIFs.
Facebook announced Friday that it will acquire GIPHY, the leading provider of animated GIFs in a $400 million deal.
The acquisition includes a streamlined application of GIFs on Facebook-owned Instagram, where users already enjoy using short animations in GIF format.
The service of the GIPHY
GIPHY is a platform for creating and sharing graphic interchange format (GIF) media, which are usually only a few seconds long and have become an indelible part of the memory culture. Discovered in the 80s, GIFs have become ubiquitous in recent years, suggesting tone and emotion over text-based communication methods.
GIPHY’s vast library contains short, sound-free, looped videos drawn from film and television, and is characterized by a complete list of tags. (You can find GIFs that express joy, excitement, and annoyance… the list is endless).
GIPHY’s library is already accessible on Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram Direct Message, where users can search, copy and paste the desired GIF image into a text-based dialogue.
Easily integrate the GIPHY library into a variety of applications, making it one of the most accessible GIF libraries out there.
Details of the long-desired acquisition
This is not Facebook’s first attempt to get GIPHY. In 2015, the social media giant tried to buy a young GIPHY, but the start-up rejected the offer and instead sought to grow its fan base by making deals with a variety of social media platforms.
Now, Facebook has succeeded in its purchase, to integrate GIPHY on Instagram “so that people can find the right way to express themselves.” While a price tag of $400 million may seem high for a program already accessible on Instagram, it makes sense when you consider how many other sites use GIPHY’s library.
Slack, Twitter and iMessage have all integrated GIPHY into their respective services, and since this is a Facebook property, there are no indications that such sites are now planning to quit. Facebook believes that users can continue to access GIPHY regardless of their preferred messaging app.
“People can still upload GIFs,” assured Vishal Shah, vice president of product at Instagram. “Developers and API partners have the same access to GIPHY’s APIs, And GIPHY’s creative community can produce even better content. “
The potential legal challenge?
Although Facebook has recently faced scrutiny by antitrust lawyers in Congress, the acquisition of GIPHY is unlikely to trigger an investigation, a source familiar with the transaction told The Washington Post . Only a limited number of contracts will guarantee a government review.
However, in February this year, the Federal Trade Commission revealed that it was about to launch a broad investigation into similar transactions of other tech companies that were too small to attract the attention of past Facebook acquisitions and government watchdogs.
In the process, the company warned that it could block those contracts that it deemed to violate the antitrust rules. For the moment, Facebook acquisition of GIPHY has received no official legal backlash.