Social Media

Facebook offers custom subscription links for creators to help get around Apple's fees

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on November 05, 2021

File photo of Meta ( Formerly known as Facebook) Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg   -  REUTERS

Earlier this year, Facebook said that it would not collect any fees from creators on Subscriptions purchases until 2023.

Facebook is launching a promotional link for creators for the platform's Subscriptions offering that will help them bypass the 30 per cent fee on in-app transactions that Apple takes.

"As we build for the metaverse, we're focused on unlocking opportunities for creators to make money from their work. The 30 per cent fees that Apple takes on transactions make it harder to do that, so we're updating our Subscriptions product so now creators can earn more," Meta (formerly Facebook) CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post.

"We're launching a promotional link for creators for their Subscriptions offering. When people subscribe using this link, creators will keep all the money they earn (minus taxes)," Zuckerberg said.

"Creators will have more ownership of their audience -- we're giving the ability for them to download the email addresses of all of their new subscribers," Zuckerberg further added.

The ability for creators to download the email addresses of their subscribers will be launched starting in December. This will apply to new subscribers. Users who already subscribe to a creator can opt into sharing their email address in the supporter hub settings section of the creator’s Page.

Facebook's subscriptions product let's users with popular Facebook pages leverage special monetisation tools for monthly recurring payments.

As part of the eligibility rules, pages are required to have at least 10,000 followers or over 250 Return Viewers and one of the following in the last 60 days- 50,000 Post Engagements or 180,000 watch minutes.

Earlier this year, Facebook had said that it would not collect any fees from creators on Subscriptions purchases until 2023.

The new link will let creators direct people to a website to complete their Subscriptions purchase using Facebook Pay, evading the 30 per cent Apple fees.

"When people purchase Subscriptions from this website on web or mobile, creators will be able to keep 100 per cent of the money they earn, excluding taxes. Creators can find their personalized promotional link in Creator Studio, which they can share with their audiences, including over email or text," Facebook explained in a separate blog post.

Apple has been criticised for its fees or what is popularly called "Apple tax" by developers including big tech companies such as Facebook.

The company takes a standard 30 per cent cut from all paid apps and in-app payments made through iOS. Last year, amid the criticism and it's legal battle with Epic Games, Apple had announced that it was lowering the cut to 15 per cent for developers who earn under $1 million annually.

Most recently, Apple had announced an update to its App Store guidelines with multiple changes.

One of the key changes announced is that the tech giant will now allow developers to contact customers with other purchasing methods.

The change was the result of an easier agreement by Apple with small developers in the United States to resolve a class-action suit from US developers.

The agreement clarified that developers can share purchase options with users outside of their iOS app. It had also expanded the price points developers can offer for subscriptions, in-app purchases, and paid apps; and established a new fund to assist qualifying US developers, Apple had said in an official release in August this year.

Creator bonus

Facebook also announced a new bonus program whereby creators can earn a bonus between $5 and $20 for each new subscriber they sign up until the end of the year.

This new bonus program is part of the tech giant's previously announced commitment to invest over $1 billion in creators through 2022.

"We’re launching a bonus program that pays creators for each new subscriber they get as part of our $1 billion creator investment announced this summer. More to come," Zuckerberg said.

Creators can earn a bonus of up to $10,000 over the course of the program. It’s invite-only in all 27 markets including India where the Subscriptions feature is available to creators.

Updates for subscribers

The platform also launched new updates for subscribers.

In livestreams, subscriber badges will now be differentiated based on how long a person has been a subscriber.

"This will make it even easier for creators to give their most dedicated supporters attention," it said.

Additionally, subscribers' comments will get highlighted with special colours on the anniversaries of their Subscriptions to help them stand out.

Published on November 04, 2021

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