Facebook’s plan to change the company’s name, as first reported by The Verge, comes at a strange time. The nearly $ 1 trillion company owned by Instagram and WhatsApp is facing one of the biggest scandals of the year for leaking internal documents leaked by a whistleblower, as well as scrutiny from lawmakers and regulators.
So what’s really going on? Does changing the name mean being distracted from his big problems? Is there a sign of more company change coming? And when did Facebook first come up with this idea?
We still don’t know much about Facebook’s new corporate name The Verge has indicated that it will connect with the company’s focus on “Metavers”, a developing digital platform developed by augmented and virtual reality where people communicate through digital avatars.
“We don’t comment on rumors or speculation.” In response to Recode’s question about the company, Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne said.
But this rebrand makes one thing clear that despite Facebook facing widespread challenges, it is not slowing down or is in a defensive crutch. It is still aiming to expand its dominance and world-building, which it is trying to achieve with its Metavers plans.
Instead of announcing serious reforms in response to Whistleblower’s revelations, CEO Mark Zuckerberg did not apologize. Instead, he and his company have dismissed Whistleblower’s allegations and evidence and are moving forward with a long-term plan to turn the science-fiction concept of a metaverse into a business reality.
For Facebook, this is not a new concept. Zuckerberg sees Metavers as the next step in major technological innovations, such as the invention of the Internet or mobile phones.
The CEO told journalist Casey Newton in March that Facebook would be a metaverse company in the next five years – not a social media company. The company recently announced 10,000 new recruits to the EU who will work at Metaverse. And this reported name change shows that Zuckerberg will rebuild the entire Facebook brand around it. The name change could also help Facebook keep itself away from baggage associated with its flagship product as it creates its shiny new meta-related products, such as Oculus headsets and other AR / VR wearable devices.
Some Facebook critics have argued that a splash new name serves as a convenient media distraction from the deeper problems at hand – tobacco giant Philip Morris renaming it in 2001, comparing the strategy to BP Amoco at the end of Altria or British Petroleum. 90 and then in 2001 B.P.
“Faced with a tsunami of evidence of irresponsible behavior and possible criminal breaches, Facebook is desperate to change the subject,” Roger McNami, a primary investor in the company who has become one of the company’s most vocal critics, told Reicode. “Journalists and policymakers need to focus on the crime scene, not shake hands.”
Typically, changing the corporate name for a company the size of Facebook requires long-term planning and strategy, so it’s unlikely that the company came up with the idea overnight – although it’s admirable that recent events could already accelerate a decision at work. Facebook has struggled with its brand appeal long before Haugen testified.
And yet, the reported name change only seems to be further verifying and provoking Some legislators Rage, such as Sen Marsha Blackburn (R-TN). Blackburn is the vice-chairman of the influential bipartisan Senate Commerce subcommittee who is leading the investigation into the recent whistleblower claims; She Facebook tweeted on Wednesday Changing its name “makes no difference unless we change the habit of prioritizing profit over the welfare of children.”
As the world waits to learn more about Facebook’s rebrand, a key detail needs to be seen to see if the company will actually make a structural change. When Google restructured its business lines in 2015 under the umbrella of Alphabet, it aimed to take co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin one step further from the company’s search business and instead focus on more experimental innovations. Although Zuckerberg gave no indication that he plans to do the same, people will have to see if there is any organizational or leadership change with this rebrand.
Meanwhile, these reported plans indicate that no matter how well-known hits it may be, Facebook will not shy away from pursuing its business goals. Despite all its public scandals, the company is still financially successful, generating billions of dollars in revenue each quarter. And while Facebook shares fell a significant 5 percent after the whistleblower went public and shortly after an unusual network disruption, prices are already bouncing back, and analysts expect another strong earnings report next week. This success seems to have given Zuckerberg a mandate to advance his ambitious agenda – which at the moment does not seem to fix the messy reality of Facebook today, but is creating a whole new one for tomorrow.