The Brief: Facebook released an experimental meme-making app called Whale in Canada.
Facebook’s New Product Experimentation (NPE) team developed the Whale app, a meme-making tool that allows users to customize stock photos to create funny image macros. The NPE team, which is responsible for other apps including Bump, an icebreaker-based chat app, and Aux, a group-listening music app. The creation of NPE and the release of apps like these exemplify how Facebook is experimenting with different media and platforms in order to stay relevant among competition from viral apps like TikTok. According to a report in The Information, “a Facebook spokesperson said that apps the group spins up could be shut down quickly and are intended to help the company find new features and services that people like.”
Whale was quietly released in Canada and has received a total of two five-star reviews on The App Store so far. The application allows users to select stock photos or upload their own. Within the app, they can edit photos and layouts, add emojis and stickers, apply filters and effects, and then save images or upload them directly to social media.
Safety & Privacy
Whale is recommended for users aged 17 and up. The ways in which NPE and Facebook interact with user data and information is laid out in Facebook’s data policy.