Mark Zuckerberg saw Instagram as a threat to Facebook
Mark Zuckerberg saw Instagram as a threat to Facebook

US lawmakers have questioned Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's claims that the company bought the popular Instagram photo-sharing service on Wednesday, and accused the company of copying the competitors' features to block competition.

At an antitrust hearing, committee members conveyed an email from Zuckerberg in 2012 as evidence that the company considered Instagram a competitive threat.

In an email sent in February 2012, Zuckerberg told David Ebersman, the company's chief financial officer at the time, that he was considering making money from buying other apps. Programs like Instagram and Path compete with Facebook.

Zuckerberg wrote in an email: "The company is still small, but the Internet exists and the brand makes sense. If it grows widely, it can do us a lot of harm."

He told Mark Ebersman that he had no intention of suggesting that Facebook would buy Instagram and (Path) to prevent them from competing in any way.

In another email, Zuckerberg agreed with comments from Facebook employees that Instagram posed a threat to Facebook and not to Google Plus.

Zuckerberg said in an email: You can almost get startups, and I think that's a good result for everyone.

According to reports, the Federal Trade Commission approved Instagram's acquisition of $ 1 billion by Facebook in 2012. The deal is looking into whether the acquisition is part of a social media giant's strategy to curb competition.

Facebook critics hope the social network will split the acquired business (including WhatsApp and Instagram) into separate works.

During the hearing, Zuckerberg was repeatedly asked about 2012 emails, and one committee member said: These documents tell a disturbing story because Facebook bought Instagram instead of competing with it.

"The anti-competitive takeover is what antitrust tries to prevent," said Zuckerberg. He sees Instagram as a competitor in terms of mobile photo sharing and additional services.

Mark Zuckerberg added: "At the time, hardly anyone saw Instagram as a public social network. People didn't think it was competing with us in this field."

He said: The acquisition has been very successful, partly because Facebook has invested in the app and Instagram's popularity is especially evident among teens with a billion users.

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