WhatsApp’s chief business officer resigns amid internal war

WhatsApp’s chief business officer Neeraj Arora, has announced he is leaving the company.

The exact reason for his departure hasn’t been confirmed, but many WhatsApp fans are worried about the introduction of adverts to the system, which has reportedly caused friction within the app’s ranks. WhatsApp originally charged a small yearly fee to use, which bought gave users encrypted conversations with no adverts however, in 2016, the Facebook-owned company dropped these charges. This led many to wonder how the company would continue to bring in revenue.

The use of advertising to fund itself is a particularly worrying choice for WhatsApp given Facebook’s infamous lack of respect for user data — the introduction of targeted advertising reduces the security and privacy of the once-secure communications app

Arora, who was one of the first employees of WhatsApp, left to “recharge and spend time with family,” however he is only the latest in a long line of resignations from WhatsApp. In November 2017 Brain Acton, co-founder of the company, resigned, which was followed in May 2018 by the other co-founder Jam Koum. Both have since spoken out against Facebook’s authoritarian control of the app. After the two co-founders left Arora was expected to become CEO, so his resignation leaves that position open.

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Similarly, Instagram, another Facebook-owned social media platform, has recently seen its co-founders jump ship after reported tensions with Mark Zuckerberg over the platform’s direction. In both cases, the Facebook chairman is accused of trying to monetise the apps to the detriment of users.

While Zuckerberg’s business strategies may be alienating the people who made Instagram and WhatsApp popular in the first place, fans of these apps can rest easy knowing that Zuckerberg’s days as Facebook chairman could be numbered too.

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