There is no such thing as a new idea. The maxim holds true in Hollywood (honestly, a remake of Mulan?) and in Silicon Valley (“Uber but for X!”), but lately social media companies have taken unoriginality to new levels. Twitter now has Fleets, a rip-off of Instagram Stories, originally copied from Snapchat. Snapchat now has Spotlight, similar to Instagram Reels, brazenly stolen from TikTok. TikTok grew from the ashes of Vine, which was acquired by Twitter, which is now pursuing a concept called Audio Spaces, a carbon copy of Clubhouse.
Does your head hurt? Mine does, as do my thumbs, which now have three times as many platforms to scroll for short-form and ephemeral videos. I am overwhelmed with content and underwhelmed by features—at least until the next big thing comes along, and everyone lunges to copy that.
Companies are always eyeing their competitors to see what works;