Facebook Just Rebranded to Meta; Does This Mean Our Apps Are Going to Change Names Too?
Oct 29, 2021   •   Kyzia Maramara
8List.ph is published by ID8, Inc.
Oct 29, 2021   •   Kyzia Maramara
Facebook is now Meta. The new corporate name will reflect its broader ambitions in virtual and augmented reality a.k.a. a new phase of the internet. But what does this change mean for Facebook and other apps like Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp? Are these apps going to change on your phones?
During Friday’s (local time) Facebook Connect conference, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook will change its corporate name to Meta. The social network giant is now a subsidiary rather than being an overarching brand. Other social networks like Messenger, WhatsApp, Instagram, Oculus, and Portal are also under the parent company Meta.
It’s ambitious and it feels like a sci-fi movie that’s impossible to happen in real life. But that’s what everyone thought of Facebook and social media when they popped into the scene. Now we can’t last a day without doomscrolling and sharing a meme. Meta just might be on to something, metaverse just might be the future of the internet.
Facebook. Meta. pic.twitter.com/oeUjiFe8PW
— Jon Erlichman (@JonErlichman) October 28, 2021
Chill out, your Facebook app will remain as it is. The same goes for Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp which will all keep their names and logos. The only difference is that now they’re all under the umbrella company Meta.
Facebook is changing its corporate name to Meta as it shifts its focus to the “metaverse” and confronts wide-ranging scrutiny of the real-world harms from its various platforms after a whistleblower leaked hundreds of internal documents. https://t.co/eeC6kvGts4 pic.twitter.com/hjfk8ai1Oi
— CNN (@CNN) October 29, 2021
While Zuck’s new announcement sounds exciting, many eyebrows were raised at the timing. Facebook is currently in the middle of a corporate leak issue (one of many) brought to light by a whistleblower and former employee. But even before that, there have been quite a lot of complaints hurled at Facebook on the grounds of privacy leaks, misinformation, content moderation, and questionable business practices.
Critics are also wary about what it means to let Meta head this “new phase of the internet.” If the company wasn’t trustworthy before and they appear to make little progress in addressing that area, would we want to give them the reins in controlling the future internet landscape?
The internet has been waiting for the new name announcement since last week. We even asked our 8List.ph followers for name recommendations and they delivered (MaritesDotCom sounds like a good name swap).
stop trying to make meta happen pic.twitter.com/L3ZSckEAl0
— Adam Lance Garcia (@AdamLanceGarcia) October 28, 2021
this all happened because zuckerberg never meta girl until college
— Brandy Jensen (@BrandyLJensen) October 28, 2021
The team behind the Facebook’s name change to Meta pic.twitter.com/AWY2lrczsg
— Lights, Camera, Pod (@LightsCameraPod) October 28, 2021
— danny o’dwyer (@dannyodwyer) October 28, 2021
— Ashutosh Srivastava (@ashutosh_sri8) October 29, 2021
Facebook has been in hot water for a long time now. Many are complaining that rebranding won’t erase all the wrongdoings and failures in privacy safety the app and its management has made. How about clearing all the issues before looking forward to kickstarting the next generation of online interactions?
Facebook changing its name to Meta is like New York City changing from Mayor de Blasio to Eric Adams
All the same terrible things are still going to stick around.
The only difference is the name.
— Curtis Sliwa for NYC Mayor (@CurtisSliwa) October 29, 2021
What are the best rebranding for @Meta so far today?
My favorite: Meta-mucil. It makes you poop.
How many tens of millions did Facebook pay for this lousy name?
— Kurt Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) October 29, 2021
i spend 33 million dollars on rebranding my unethical and evil company to sound more unethical and evil, but in like a very on-the-nose evil corporation in a video game kind of way https://t.co/2lfxwTx7Kl
— Chip Cheezum (@ChipCheezum) October 28, 2021
Zuckerberg has been inundated with scandals since he created the social networking site in 2004. There was the 2016 US presidential election scandal that showed how Facebook failed to regulate political ads and fake news — something that critics claim factored in Donald Trump’s win. There was the Cambridge Analytica scandal which used Facebook’s data of over 50 million Americans without their permission. (If you want to learn more about this, check out the Netflix documentary The Great Hack.) And then this year, there was a corporate leak issue and dozens of other privacy leaks we don’t have time to dive into.
The bottom line is, Facebook might have changed its name, but unless it changes its policies to better protect millions of users worldwide, it will still be embroiled in these challenges for the foreseeable future. VR and augmented reality sound nice, but they shouldn’t come at the cost of our privacy.
Kyzia spends most of her time capturing the world around her through photos, paragraphs, and playlists. She is constantly on the hunt for the perfect chocolate chip cookie, and a great paperback thriller to pair with it.
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