Skip to Content
Silicon Valley

Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Twitter will now let you transfer data between their services

July 20, 2018

Some of the tech giants have partnered up to allow easier information sharing between their platforms.

The news: In news originating from the Data Transfer Project, which was founded last year, large sites including Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Instagram, Flickr, and Twitter will now be able to use information already uploaded on one service to populate the same user’s account on another platform. The new tools can grab and translate information from the different services’ proprietary APIs (aka tools or protocols within the software).

What it means for you: Instead of uploading photos, events, contacts, or other personal information to a slew of websites, you will now be able to automatically access it on other platforms—no reuploading required. So if you’ve uploaded your favorite picture to Instagram, you can easily share it to your Flickr account, too.

Why do this? While it is about making things easier for users, it’s also related to GDPR compliance. The new EU regulation requires companies to allow users to easily transport their data between different services.

What’s next: The project is looking for additional partners and is working to streamline the data transfer process even further.

Deep Dive

Silicon Valley

Here’s how a Twitter engineer says it will break in the coming weeks

One insider says the company’s current staffing isn’t able to sustain the platform.

Twitter’s potential collapse could wipe out vast records of recent human history

What happens when the world’s knowledge is held in a quasi-public square owned by a private company that could soon go out of business?

Twitter may have lost more than a million users since Elon Musk took over

Estimates from Bot Sentinel suggest that more than 875,000 users deactivated their accounts between October 27 and November 1, while half a million more were suspended.

Former Twitter employees fear the platform might only last weeks

An ultimatum by Elon Musk demanding "extremely hardcore" working culture appears to have backfired. Insiders fear this could spell the end without drastic changes.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.