What’s in a name? Mark Zuckerberg announced on Thursday, October 28, that Facebook will now be called Meta to better encompass what the company does.
Zuckerberg, who founded Facebook in 2004, unveiled plans to build a “metaverse,” which he pictures as a space where people can work, play, communicate and game in a virtual space.
“From now on, we’re going to be the metaverse first, not Facebook first,” he said at the company’s annual Connect conference. “Our brand is so tightly linked to one product that it can’t possibly represent everything we’re doing today, let alone the future.”
The New York native, 37, explained that over time, his team hopes Meta can be seen as a “metaverse company,” which is what he wants to “anchor” its work and identity to as of Thursday.
“We’re now looking at and reporting on our business as two different segments, one for our family of apps, and one for our work on future platforms,” he continued. “And as part of this, it is time for us to adopt a new company brand to encompass everything that we do, to reflect who we are and what we hope to build.”
The company updated its social media pages with a fresh logo and new handle on Twitter for Meta, following the major announcement.
“The metaverse is the next evolution of social connection. It’s a collective project that will be created by people all over the world, and open to everyone,” the brand noted via Twitter on Thursday. “You’ll be able to socialize, learn, collaborate and play in ways that go beyond what’s possible today.”
The platforms within the company, including Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp, will not change.
The new moniker came amid waves of controversy surrounding the company. Earlier this month, The Washington Post reported that Facebook withheld important information about vaccine misinformation. Facebook spokesperson Aaron Simpson told the publication in a statement on Thursday that they’ve worked toward promoting reliable information regarding the coronavirus pandemic, but it’s not an easy task.
“There’s no silver bullet to fighting misinformation, which is why we take a comprehensive approach which includes removing more than 20 million pieces of content that break our COVID misinformation policies … connecting more than 2 billion people to reliable information about COVID-19 and vaccines, and partnering with independent fact-checkers,” Simpson said.
The company was previously accused of not protecting its users from predators and abusers, and is currently in the middle of a scandal about its alleged involvement in genocide, human trafficking and disinformation.
Zuckerberg previously claimed that the allegations were a “coordinated effort to selectively use leaked documents to paint a false picture of our company.”
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