OAKLAND (Calif.) -- Facebook is changing its logo and name, just like many other companies in trouble.
Facebook Inc. now goes by the name Meta Platforms Inc. or Meta, in order to reflect the statement of CEO Mark Zuckerberg Thursday, which was a commitment to develop the new surround-yourself technology called the " Metaverse". However, the social network will still be known as Facebook.
Those who are not in crisis include the chief executive officer and senior management, the corporate structure, and the company's current crisis.
Skeptics accused the company immediately of trying to shift the topic from the Facebook Papers which are troves of leaked documents that have landed it in the worst crisis since its founding in Zuckerberg's Harvard dorm. According to the documents, Facebook is seen as prioritizing profits over removing hate, political strife, and misinformation from its platform.
Marketing consultant Laura Ries was reminded of the time when BP changed its name to "Beyond Petroleum" in order to avoid criticisms that it had harmed the environment.
She stated that Facebook is the largest social media platform in the world and was being accused of creating something harmful for society and people. They can't leave the social network as a company and talk about a future metaverse.
Facebook, the app, isn't changing its name. Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger are not changing their names. The company's corporate structure will not change. However, the stock will begin trading on December 1 under a new ticker symbol MVRS.
The metaverse is a kind of the internet made real, or at most rendered in 3D. Zuckerberg described it as a virtual environment that you can enter rather than just viewing on a screen. It allows people to meet, play, and work using virtual reality headsets, AR glasses, smartphones, or other devices.
Victoria Petrock, an analyst who tracks emerging technologies, says that it will also include other aspects of online living such as shopping and social networking.
Zuckerberg's venture into virtual reality has been compared to other tech billionaires' space adventures. It's not surprising that he'd want to escape the current reality amid increasing scrutiny and calls for his resignation.
Facebook's new segment, Reality Labs, was announced by Zuckerberg on Monday. It will report its financial results independently from the company’s Family of Apps segment beginning in the last quarter of the year. According to the company, Reality Labs will decrease Facebook's overall operating profit of around $10 billion this year.
Other tech companies like Microsoft, Nvidia chipmaker Nvidia, and Epic Games Fortnite creator Epic Games have also been describing their visions for how the metaverse will function.
Zuckerberg stated that he expected the metaverse will reach a billion people in the next decade, and that he hopes that the new technology will create millions of jobs for creators.
This announcement is made amid increased regulatory and legislative scrutiny of Facebook in many countries due to the Facebook Papers. Corporate rebranding won't solve the many problems identified by internal documents, nor will it quieten the alarms raised by critics for years about the damage the company's products cause to society.
Zuckerberg has dismissed the Facebook Papers furore as unfair.
A surprising twist was the purchase by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a philanthropic organization headed by Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan of a Canadian scientific literature analysis firm called Meta in 2017.
However, Meta.org announced on Thursday afternoon that it would "sunset at the end March." Meta.com was redirected to the old Facebook corporate site.
The iconic thumbs-up sign at Menlo Park headquarters, California was painted to look like a pretzel shape logo.
The name change was not well received by some of Facebook's most vocal critics. The Real Facebook Oversight Board is a watchdog organization that monitors the company and announced it would keep its name.
The group released a statement saying that "changing their name does not change reality: Facebook has destroyed our democracy and is world's largest peddler of hate and disinformation." "Their meaningless name changes should not distract us from the investigation, regulation, and independent oversight necessary to hold Facebook responsible."
Zuckerberg explained that the Facebook name no longer covers all the company's activities. This includes Instagram, Messenger and its Quest VR headset, as well as its Horizon VR platform.
Zuckerberg stated that "Today, we are seen as social media companies." "But we are a company that connects people with technology."