Mark Zuckerberg has stated that his firm would no longer be known as Facebook. The rebranding is part of the global company’s larger aim to create a virtual world, but opponents believe it’s a ploy to divert attention away from recent issues.
Facebook intends to rebrand itself. According to The Verge, the move might be disclosed during the company’s annual Connect Conference on October 28 or sooner. For Facebook, the rebranding is more than simply a name change; it is a reflection of the company’s expanding goals and concentration on a new area: the metaverse.
Facebook has previously declared plans to invest $50 million in creating a ‘responsible’ metaverse. As part of its ‘metaverse’ goals, it also expects to generate roughly 10,000 new employment in Europe. But what is the metaverse, and why is Facebook so interested in it? What’s more, does the metaverse even exist?
Here’s what we know about Facebook’s metamorphosis.
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Is Facebook changing its name?
The Verge was the first to report on Facebook’s ambitions to rebrand itself. Just as Alphabet is now Google’s parent business, we may see a new parent corporation under which Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, and others will function.
Facebook’s intention to rename itself is an attempt to align itself with the focus on constructing the metaverse, which CEO Mark Zuckerberg plainly views as a reality sooner or later. And Facebook, which also controls the Oculus VR game platform, doesn’t want to be left out of the metaverse competition.
It also demonstrates that Facebook wishes to be renowned for more than simply social networking. The timing would also appear to be appropriate, given Facebook’s current unfavourable focus, with the recent whistleblower allegations further adding to the company’s troubles. And Facebook is being scrutinised by regulators in almost every country, including its home market of the United States. But there are greater goals at stake here, which is why we need to discuss the metaverse in the context of Facebook.
The Facebook firm has changed its name to Meta, but the Facebook social networking software will remain the same. According to a release, the name change is intended to unify the business’s “apps and technology under one single company identity.”
Since its inception in 2004, Facebook has acquired the social media applications Instagram and WhatsApp. It has also made investments in other technologies like as the digital wallet Novi, the video-calling gadget Portal, and the virtual reality system Oculus.
A significant component of the rebranding effort is to focus Meta on bringing the “metaverse” to life.
However, sceptics argue that this is simply a ploy to divert attention away from the so-called Facebook documents.
The documents, which were hacked by a former Facebook employee, exposed how Facebook ignored or downplayed internal concerns about the detrimental and frequently catastrophic repercussions of its social network algorithms throughout the world.
What is the Metaverse?
The concept is based on Neal Stephenson’s cult science fiction novel Snow Crash, which was released in 1992 and was the first time the term “metaverse” was used. The storey is set in a dystopian world in which governments have relinquished control to private businesses and deal with many facets of current life, such as virtual reality, digital money, and so on. Among Silicon Valley executives, Stephenson’s work is held in near-divine awe.
But the concept of the metaverse has also been explored in works such as Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One (2011 book, subsequently adapted into a film in 2018), and, of course, The Matrix. There are also various writings on the internet that attempt to describe what the metaverse is or can be. Matthew Ball, a venture capitalist, has a nine-part series on his blog, as well as an introduction to the metaverse essay, which is a wonderful primer for anybody who wants to delve deep into the topic.
According to Mr. Zuckerberg, the metaverse will be a place where people can communicate, work, and create, and he expects it to reach a billion people over the next several decades.
And, while he doesn’t expect to make any money from it in the short term, the tech tycoon is lending his support to the concept.
“This is not going to be a lucrative investment for us any time soon,” Mr Zuckerberg told analysts.
“However, we firmly think that the metaverse will be the mobile internet’s heir.”
What is the meaning of Meta?
Meta is a prefix – a word that comes before another — that implies after or beyond, to work at a higher level or to transform.
Metacarpus (the finger bones after the wrist), metalanguage (language used to describe another language), and metamorphosis are a few examples (a change of form).
However, in popular culture, it is used to denote when something is self-aware.
There might be several difficult answers to these issues. However, one might think of the metaverse as a parallel, virtual world where people can have alternate identities, possessions, and characters.
According to the complicated explanation, Metaverse is meant to be the post-Internet world, a type of decentralised computing platform, if you will, that is continuous and live. It is a completely digital economy, and most Silicon Valley intellectuals believe that the metaverse exists in both the digital and physical realms.
According to Ball’s article, interoperability is critical to the success of the metaverse. Yes, virtual reality would be a component of this metaverse, but the concept extends beyond just donning a VR headset and beginning to play a game. The metaverse, according to Ball, does not reset, halt, or end, but rather “continues endlessly.”
The metaverse is not something that can be built by a single firm. Facebook isn’t the only one working on this. Epic Games, the creators of Fortnite, has ambitious aspirations for the metaverse based on its Unreal engine. In reality, Fortnite already includes many components that fit to the concept, such as live events, its own money, and so forth.
How will the Metaverse really work?
According to Ball, digital spaces, Virtual Reality games, a virtual environment, or even a game like Fortnite are not the metaverse, though he admits that Fortnite contains features of the latter. For example, Fortnite recently staged a ‘music event,’ in which emerging musicians were allowed to engage with their musical sets inside the game. As a result, the game allows other firms and artists to display their wares to gamers.
The metaverse is being envisioned as a new global order, where your services might be exchanged for other virtual assets, or Cryptocurrencies. To put it another way, your existence will be inextricably linked to the digital world in a far deeper and more intricate way. On one level, it does sound dystopic, and the majority of cases in popular fiction where the virtual and real worlds have combined fit that description.
Interoperability will be critical since everything and everyone is expected to be a part of this. According to Ball, ensuring the seamless operation of the metaverse would necessitate a rewrite of the present rules that govern most internet services and operations.
What is Facebook’s plan with the Metaverse?
The metaverse is important to Facebook’s future, and it’s easy to see why. A digital world in which we spend the majority of our time chatting with friends, where virtual goods are more valuable, and where the laws are fundamentally different. Facebook, of course, would want this. Furthermore, Facebook has its own Oculus VR game platform, which might serve as a portal into this metaverse.
The metaverse, according to Facebook’s own description, will allow users to interact with individuals who are not in the same physical area. “You’ll be able to spend time with friends, work, play, study, shop, create, and do other things.” It’s not about spending more time online; rather, it’s about making the time you do spend online more important,” the business noted. In comparison to how others have theorised the metaverse, this definition is relatively straightforward.
Facebook also acknowledges that the metaverse will not be “created overnight,” and that many of the goods will “only be completely realised in the next 10-15 years.” However, Facebook claims that it must first address the issue of how the metaverse will be developed.
The social media behemoth says it wants to contribute to the creation of the metaverse “responsibly.” It announced the XR Programs and Research Fund in September, a two-year $50 million “investment in programmes and external research” in which it will collaborate with “industry civil rights groups, governments, nonprofits, and academic institutions to determine how to responsibly build these technologies.”