The social media family is a funny thing–each channel wants to be incomparable, inimitable, ineluctable. But if they succeeded in that, there would only be one. And where one social medium disappoints us, another comforts. It’s capitalism at its most basic, and its most ruthless. We demand fantastic ranges of features, while ignoring the inconsistencies of these demands with the medium’s original purpose. And as they work to defunct one another, we also require that they work together well enough to minimize any inconvenience to the user.

Thus, this breakneck industry grows and crumbles and proceeds, and we must note the current state of affairs between the moguls–how they work, how they fight, and how we can harness these relationships. To fairly explicate the intricacies of social network frenemy-ships, we turn to the queen of all cat(-fight)s.


No matter what the kids are saying about Facebook’s increasing irrelevance, you can’t have a discussion about social networks without first addressing the OG (not dissimilar to spending an hour extolling Kanye’s latest social media outburst before advising your client to never, never, ever utilize his content strategy). Facebook’s foothold as the first major social media network requires an inaugural discourse on its relationship with other social media channels.



Facebook + YouTube = Enemies that the Public Forces to Fight for Viewing Pleasure, Making Each Other Famous


Facebook has been ramping up its video offering for some time now, and YouTube has been largely to blame for that envy-eyed focus. Facebook is often pitted against Google by the tech media, not unlike that teacher in high school who just wanted you to be more like your brother. I’M NOT TOM, MR. HIMES. Ahem, excuse me. In fact, Facebook’s control of Instagram is focusing heavily on optimizing its video features–rolling out extra time for Instagram ads and prioritizing video views over likes. Additionally, there is the ever present discussion of Facebook’s ramped video strategy: using its algorithm to ensure organic video reach triumphs over embedded YouTube videos. Essentially, a content strategy should allow for each medium to dictate customized content: shortened, time-lapse video that don’t require audio are more optimized for Facebook, while full tutorials are perfectly at home on YouTube. 


Facebook + Twitter = Archrivals that Will Never Ever Ever Ever Get Back Together Because Bandaids Don’t Fix Bullet Holes


Ahh, these two are old enemies–the OGs of SM. Both are known as the juggernauts–despite incessant debate of either’s projected or ensured downfall–against which all fledgling social mediums are compared. However, this does not make them old partners, or even forced-smile acquaintances. In terms of working together, users have been able to link Twitter accounts to Facebook for some time, which pulls all tweets through directly. However, there is little use for this, as the audience and sentiment can be so disparate. Though the images display well, most Facebooked tweets require revision, as the usernames on either are definitively disconnected. Though Facebook does support hashtags (since 2013), their trending topics differ from Twitter, in that they are rarely sourced with those hashtags. Thus, using more than even two hashtags is counterproductive and out of touch, from a content perspective. This leaves little room for debate of whether posting identical content to these channels is wise. And while Facebook might be flourishing amidst Twitter’s demise, Facebook should keep in mind (softly repeat: they should keep in mind): there is nothing Twitter does better than revenge.


Facebook + Pinterest = Acquaintances that Can’t Remember Why They Dislike Each Other


There is not a lot of crossover between the uses of Facebook and Pinterest, unless you’re using Facebook to surf your friends’ interests, which is possible but kind of weird. Facebook videos do not integrate with Pinterest as well as YouTube. Pinning is not permitted from Facebook when using a “Pin It!” browser extension and doesn’t work well via Pinterest directly. There is a Pinterest help section for sharing pins and board to Facebook, but raise your hand if you have ever seen anyone use that feature. Exactly. (Even if you raised your hand, I can’t see it and it wouldn’t illustrate my point, so…)


Facebook + Instagram = The BFFs that Are So #SquadGoals Nobody Remembers that One Time They Unfollowed Each Other Or Something

Since Facebook bought Instagram in 2012, suffice to say these two are getting along. (It’s a love story, and baby, $1 billion just said yes.) In terms of working together, users can link Facebook to their Instagram and push posts through automatically, but it does not differ from linking Instagram to Twitter or other social accounts. While Facebook does pull the photos to display correctly in the feed, there is not automated way to transfer the tags. Instagram captions tend to use more hashtags than Facebook photos, so it is fairly obvious when a photo is intended for Instagram and auto-pulled to Facebook. Just another picture-based post to burn, am I right? The fact that these two are so different is what made this partnership so brilliant–let them work together, but let your content work alone.


Facebook + Snapchat = Probably Could Have Been Friends but Have Nothing in Common


Of course, people are recycling their Snapchat content for Facebook, but these two mediums do not work well for a number of reasons. Firstly, vertical video is not optimized for Facebook, and the Snapchat text captions do not read well as a result. Additionally, Snapchat is built around its 24-hour story period (as much as Slinger is working to extend that), so using Snapchat content in Facebook is poor form, truly. Let’s just all agree that these two mediums should never, ever, ever get back together.


Facebook + Vine = Pretty Much Over Pretending Each Other Even Exists


Hmm, Facebook and Vine. Not a lot to be said for this one, as their passive-aggressive tension has already boiled over in old news. Users mostly stopped trying to connect presences on these sites, as Facebook does not integrate any Vine videos or link Vine accounts. The closest Facebook came to even acknowledging Vine’s presence in the social media family was when they integrated auto-playing videos (they can’t stop, and they won’t stop).


And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how you satisfy my brother’s disturbing request for more Taylor Swift-driven content. (You’re welcome, Tom; tell Mr. Himes I’m sorry I yelled.)


This is the first article in our “Fight Nice, Social Media” series; stay tuned for our next piece on how Twitter is basically the Chandler Bing of social media FRIENDShips.

In the meantime, for more questionably relevant content, follow me on Twitter and Snapchat @jenaprats. XOXO, I don’t know how else to end this article.