Facebook Inc. today appointed Adam Mosseri, previously Instagram’s vice president of product, to lead the photo-sharing social network following the resignation of co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger
In an effort to allay fears of internal dissent, the announcement was made by Systrom (pictured, right) and Krieger (left), who posed smiling together with Mosseri (middle).
While officially leaving Instagram to take “some time off to explore our curiosity and creativity again” and possibly to pursue building a new startup from scratch, rumors have circulated since the announcement that the real reason the pair were departing was disagreements with Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg over the direction of the app.
Their resignation also followed in the steps of Jan Koum, co-founder and CEO of Facebook-owned messaging giant WhatsApp, who quit Facebook in April over disagreements over data privacy, advertising and encryption.
The appointment of Mosseri was pitched as bringing continuity to Instagram. “Since we announced our departure, many people have asked us what we hope for the future of Instagram,” Systrom and Krieger said in a blog post. “To us, the most important thing is keeping our community — all of you — front and center in all that Instagram does. We believe that Adam will hold true to these values and that Instagram will continue to thrive.”
Although Mosseri has been appointed from within the ranks of Instagram, he only joined Instagram in May and prior to that was a Facebook veteran who had served in multiple roles. Prior to Instagram, he was in charge of Facebook’s News Feed for a number of years and before that he led Facebook Home, a failed attempt to sell a Facebook-branded version of Android.
Notably, he is also seen as being close to Zuckerberg. Systrom and Krieger may be selling the idea of Instagram being in safe hands with Mosseri, but Recode note that the move comes at a time Zuckerberg “seems to be tightening control on all Facebook’s standalone apps, including Instagram.”
Zuckerberg lackey or not, Mosseri does have solid experience and Instagram could be in far worse hands.