sFor days there have been speculations about a possible rebranding of Facebook, and now it’s official: the American internet giant will be called “meta” in the future. This was announced by CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Thursday at the in-house virtual “Connect” conference.
With a name that ties his company intimately with the strategy he has increasingly published for the “metaverse” or “metaverse”, a virtual space he describes as the “next generation of the Internet” and “the successor to the mobile Internet” – that of his company’s “next chapter”. The new name aims to reverse this trend.
The rebranding is a degradation of the Facebook name and ensures that the service that is the origin of the company will be just one of many different products, along with platforms like Instagram and Whatsapp.
“Metaverse first, not Facebook first”
Zuckerberg said he thought a lot about his company’s identity. Although Facebook is one of the most used “in world history” and “icon” products, the name reflects less broadly the company. “Our brand is so closely tied to one product that it cannot represent everything we do today, let alone the future.” So it’s time to give yourself a new brand identity. In the future, the company will be “Metaversum first, not Facebook first”.
The new logo is also associated with the name change, which is reminiscent of the infinity symbol. Zuckerberg initially left it open about whether there should be other structural changes.
With the new identity, Facebook is getting rid of the name associated with many of the controversies surrounding the company. The group is doing so at a particularly turbulent time. He has recently been pressured by the revelations of whistleblower Frances Haugen, a former employee who accuses him of not doing much to counteract the damage his platform is causing, despite being well aware of the risks. Haugen has backed up these claims with thousands of internal documents that have become the subject of a whole series of investigative stories. The whistleblower case is causing an uproar around the world, and Haugen has appeared before the US Congress and this week also before the British Parliament.
Facebook and Zuckerberg have defended themselves against the allegations. Just a few days ago, the CEO spoke of a “coordinated effort” to paint a “wrong picture” of his company. No other company combats harmful content as “effectively” as Facebook.
At Thursday’s event, he didn’t directly address the controversy, but did try to show his vision for the Maitivers. He was just a potential nod to the negative headlines when he said, “I know a lot of people will say this is not the time to focus on the future and admit that there are important things to work on in the present.”