Tech: The Instagram founders snubbed Mark Zuckerberg in their original goodbye letter

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Instagram cofounder Kevin Systrom and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Instagram cofounders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger announced they were leaving Facebook on Monday night, but snubbed Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in their goodbye letter. Systrom did eventually mention Zuckerberg in an Instagram post, along with a few other Facebook executives.

  • Instagram cofounders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger announced they were quitting Facebook on Monday, but snubbed Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in their goodbye letter.
  • The pair did eventually mention Zuckerberg in an Instagram post, along with a few other Facebook executives.
  • This is not the first time a founder has snubbed Zuckerberg in announcing their departure — WhatsApp's Jan Koum also made no mention of the Facebook CEO when he left in April.

Instagram's cofounders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger announced they were leaving Facebook on Monday night amid reports of tension with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Systrom and Zuckerberg have enjoyed a good relationship since Facebook bought Instagram for $1 billion in 2012, but the Instagram CEO failed to mention his boss in his farewell message.

Systrom released a statement, which carried more than a few red flags, but most notable was the complete absence of Zuckerberg's name. Here is the statement in full:

"Mike and I are grateful for the last eight years at Instagram and six years with the Facebook team. We’ve grown from 13 people to over a thousand with offices around the world, all while building products used and loved by a community of over one billion. We’re now ready for our next chapter.

We’re planning on taking some time off to explore our curiosity and creativity again. Building new things requires that we step back, understand what inspires us and match that with what the world needs; that’s what we plan to do.

We remain excited for the future of Instagram and Facebook in the coming years as we transition from leaders to two users in a billion. We look forward to watching what these innovative and extraordinary companies do next."

It was only a few hours later that Systrom got round to mentioning Zuckerberg — alongside Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, CTO Mike Schroepfer, and Chief Product Officer Chris Cox — in an Instagram message.

While largely identical, the Instagram post featured a few extra lines:

"We've loved learning to scale a company and nurture an enormous global community. And we couldn’t have done it without our amazing Instagram team, and the support of @zuck, @sherylsandberg, @schrep, and @chriscox at Facebook — we've learned so much from all of you."

Krieger posted a virtually identical message on his Instagram as well.

The initial snub comes amid reports that there have been clashes over Instagram's autonomy in recent months, with sources pointing out that Facebook is gripping its $1 billion acquisition tighter.

It's not the first time Zuckerberg has been omitted from a goodbye message. WhatsApp founder Jan Koum also omitted Zuckerberg's name when he announced he was quitting in April, which was reportedly prompted by his discontent with Facebook increasingly encroaching on users' privacy.

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