Facebook is planning to change its name as part of creating a “metaverse” for all of its users, according to The Verge. The plan comes after Facebook began receiving multiple allegations of business malpractices.
According to sources, the company plans to make an announcement next week. Since Facebook wants to be more than just your everyday social media, the name change is the first step towards a big change.
Not much is known at this point in time, but chances are that the company will have an umbrella brand company and Messenger, Instagram, Oculus, WhatsApp and other products will be under that parent company, similar to the structure of Google – which sits under the parent company Alphabet.
One Small Part Of A Big Plan
The move is believed to be the first step towards building the metaverse, which aims to integrate augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) into one large online realm. The company said that they’re willing to hire more than 10,000 people just for that.
The plan was to allow Facebook’s 2.85 billion monthly users to freely walk around and interact virtually with one another in real-time. Theoretically, users can join a virtual Starbucks meeting with colleagues and then join another room with other people if they want to.
Why Is Facebook Changing Its Name?
The move could be part of Facebook’s major overhaul after numerous controversies and revelations linked to misinformation, content moderation failures, and negative effects it brings to users’ mental health went viral.
According to Frances Haugen, whistleblower and former product manager, Facebook is aware that it’s being used as a platform to spread hate and fake news but has done little to no action to prevent it. Facebook officials have come under fire for prioritizing money over health, and lawmakers have started comparing them to the Big Tobacco.
However, the company denied those claims, labeling them as something “misleading” and stressing out that their virtual products do more good than harm.
Meanwhile, CEO Mark Zuckerberg will attend the annual Connect conference on October 28 to discuss more on the subject.
Throughout the years, some major companies have tried changing their brands as part of a fresh start. For example, KFC used to be Kentucky Fried Chicken. Even Snapchat rebranded as Snap as it forays into hardware in 2016.
High-profile name changes are not uncommon whenever companies are linked to scandals or controversies. For example, ValuJet changed its name to AirTran after a tragic incident in 1996.