Meta is reportedly considering offering paid subscriptions to Facebook and Instagram users in the EU, enabling them to avoid ads and personal data usage.
According to New York Times, what has led Meta to this decision seems to be the evolving EU policies that demand restriction of collection of user data for ad targeting. Subscribers of Facebook and Instsgram would therefore, not see ads in the apps, hence allowing Meta to dodge the EU privacy regulations in a way.
Meta can potentially offer its users an alternative to the company’s ad-based services, which is in alignment with another upcoming EU policy within the Digital Services Act (D.S.A.). The objective of policy is to provide users with more explicit controls for how their personal data is used, which means that they will be able to opt out of personalized feeds. This is similar to Apple’s app tracking policy that allows iOS users to opt out of sharing their personal data with apps.
As opposed to Mark Zuckerberg’s plans of Facebook “always” being a free platform, Meta has already begun selling verification checks on Facebook and Instagram for $US11.99 a month. This increases the likelihood of Meta adopting the subscription strategy, although in that case too, Facebook and Instagram will remain free for those who don’t opt for subscriptions.