Skip to content
Subscriber Only
Tae Kim

Never Mind the Metaverse. Facebook Needs to Solve Its TikTok Problem.

The social-media giant, focused on its far-off vision for virtual existence, has been caught unprepared by the growing popularity of short-form video. 

Trouble ahead.

Trouble ahead.

Photographer: Kelly Sullivan/Getty Images 

Facebook parent Meta Platforms Inc. has suffered a string of public challenges in the past year as regulators intensified their scrutiny of the company and Apple rolled out a privacy feature that crimped a key source of user data. But as Meta’s wobbly revenue outlook made clear Wednesday, the company is facing yet another threat to its business. The social media landscape seems to be rapidly shifting toward short-form video, a space dominated not by Facebook but by TikTok. 

Meta warned in its earnings results that revenue for the current quarter would come in at about $27 billion to $29 billion, well below the $30.25 billion median estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Meta also reported that user numbers for the quarter ended in December had stagnated. The weak showing sent Meta’s shares plunging more than 20% in after-hours trading.