Facebook has longed to get into the video scene for a while now as it recognizes that there is plenty of money to be made through advertising, although admittedly as much as they have tried, YouTube is still pretty much king. However back in the day, it seems that Vine’s potential was threatening enough to give Facebook pause.

So much so that according to internal emails, it revealed how Facebook planned on dealing with Vine as their competition, which was by cutting off their access to user data. Now if you might recall, one of the features you’ll notice among apps is that you can not only login with Facebook, but you can also search for friends on Facebook who are also using the app.

However based on the emails, it seems that Facebook decided that they would cut off their access. According to the email sent by Facebook vice-president Justin Osofsky, “Twitter launched Vine today which lets you shoot multiple short video segments to make one single, 6-second video. Unless anyone raises objections, we will shut down their friends API access today. We’ve prepared reactive PR.” This move was okay-ed by Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg who replied, “Yup, go for it.”

Facebook has since defended the emails by stating that back then, it was part of the company’s policy to protect themselves against their competitors. In a statement made by a spokesperson, “We built our developer platform years ago to pave the way for innovation in social apps and services. At that time we made the decision to restrict apps built on top of our platform that replicated our core functionality,. These kind of restrictions are common across the tech industry with different platforms having their own variant including YouTube, Twitter, Snap and Apple.”

That being said, Facebook has since removed that policy, citing their decision to keep their platform “as open as possible”.

Filed in General. Read more about Facebook and Vine.

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