Facebook has seen better days. Long gone is the era where it was known for Farmville, updating your friends on life events and an annual flood of birthday wishes. These days, it’s more associated with the proliferation of conspiracy theories, the dividing of families, massive user data breaches, undermining faith in good news outlets, the sinister aims of bad people, infiltrating the American Church with trolls and hastening the erosion of democratic norms. Oh, and don’t forget global outages. So, time for a name change. That oughta fix it.
A new report says Mark Zuckerberg will unplug from his Human Rest-o-matic 3000 long enough to announce an official change in the company name. The new name will likely reflect a shift in Facebook’s strategy, which is to be less tied to a single social media site and more of an interconnected metaverse of our online reality. The idea is to demote Facebook to just one other app in the company’s arsenal, alongside Instagram, What’sApp and, of course, the one they’re really hoping will be a game changer: Oculus. In other words, if you’re concerned about Facebook’s incredible amount of power and control over our daily lives, that’s exactly the lane Zuckerberg’s leaning into.
The Verge reports that the change, which could be announced as early as next week, “could also serve to further separate the futuristic work Zuckerberg is focused on from the intense scrutiny Facebook is currently under for the way its social platform operates today.” And, sure, a little rebrand is in order. But it doesn’t really seem like the thing people were mad about is the name “Facebook.”