When Facebook came out in the mid-2000s, it was called “The Facebook.” Then, it switched to just, “Facebook.” Now, it is “Meta.”
During a portion of this morning’s Facebook Connect conference, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg explained that Facebook, as a conglomerate, will now be called Meta, and that Facebook, the social media platform, will fall under Meta’s umbrella alongside other platforms like WhatsApp and Instagram. And in a series of Tweets posted to the company formerly known as Facebook’s official account, it was explained that Meta will be aimed at helping builld the phenomenon known as the “metaverse.”
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
“Announcing @Meta — the Facebook company’s new name. Meta is helping to build the metaverse, a place where we’ll play and connect in 3D. Welcome to the next chapter of social connection,” Meta tweeted. “The names of the apps that we build—Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp—will remain the same.”
Continuing on to explain exactly what the metaverse is, Meta included another video which will hopefully help internet users understand what the company’s new goals are, and what they mean for digital communication.
“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. You’ll be able to socialize, learn, collaborate and play in ways that go beyond what’s possible today,” Meta captioned the video, which dives into the details of what the future will hold.
This re-brand comes on the heels of multiple PR nightmares, “including misinformation on its platforms, content moderation failures and revelations about the negative effect its products have on some users’ mental health,” and is possibly an attempt to turn the page on the company’s ever-worsening reputation.
Zuckerberg never mentioned the possibility that bad publicity affected the company’s re-brand, but did acknowledge that “Facebook” simply wasn’t cutting it anymore when it came to what the company is all about.
“I’ve been thinking a lot about our identity as we begin this next chapter. Facebook is one of the most used products in the history of the world, It is an iconic social media brand, but increasingly it just doesn’t encompass everything that we do,” Zuckerberg said. “Today we’re seen as a social media company, but in our DNA, we are a company that builds technology to connect people. And the metaverse is the next frontier just like social networking was when we got started.”
What exactly the creation of the metaverse will entail is unclear, but with one of the biggest tech companies in the world diving headfirst into it, it would not be surprising if we start hearing about “the metaverse” at an increasingly rapid rate.
What do you think about Facebook’s re-branding to Meta? Let us know in the comments.