The social media platform Tsu.co has garnered more than 4 million users since its 2013 inception, but Facebook would have you believe it simply doesn't exist. Since late September, Facebook has blocked (and retroactively deleted 10 million) mentions of and links to Tsu.co from any of its platforms, including Instagram and Messenger, reports the New York Daily News. "You can post PornHub links on Facebook, but not Tsu.co," Tsu founder Sebastian Sobczak says. And while he claims that the reason for the block is having a model that is "dangerous to them," Facebook rep Melanie Ensign says it all boils down to user experience: "We do not allow developers to incentivize content sharing on our platform because it encourages spammy sharing and creates a bad experience for people on Facebook."
While Facebook keeps all profits from ad revenue, Tsu keeps just 10%; the remaining 90% is shared between users who've created content and the chain of friends who invited said user. CNNMoney has spoken to a dozen Tsu.co users, most of them artists and models who have yet to make any money on the site, but they overwhelmingly agree that Facebook's block is unfair. "I don't believe that Facebook and Instagram want Tsu to go viral," one user from Colombia says. "It would cost them a lot of money." After posting a link to a Tsu.co video on Facebook, for instance, 50 Cent had his mention removed as well, reports the AP. Facebook, meanwhile, says it will lift the block if Tsu no longer allows its users to post simultaneously to Tsu and Facebook. For now, mention Tsu.co and you'll likely be met with this error: "The content you're trying to share includes a link that our security systems detected to be unsafe." (This model recently quit social media altogether.)