According to statistics provided by Facebook this year, their “website currently has over 2.8 billion users per month, of which 1.9 billion use the website every day”, which undoubtedly shows how huge the global success of the website is. Along with tremendous success, there are also many challenges of good and bad fame.
Not more than 17 years ago, when Facebook began to be popularized, everyone was delighted with the possibilities social media offer. The following years were a good time for Facebook and other social networks, which were gaining popularity among people of all ages, every corner of the world and with various interests.
In the beginning, it was a hit, every day users shared their thoughts, photos from travels and everyday life, shared songs, quotes, commented and liked posts with others. Over time, users stopped engaging in creating their profiles, and then increasingly stopped wasting time scrolling. More and more often we can hear about detox from social media, setting a time limit for their use or completely uninstalling them. Growing negative feedback due to scandals, data leaks for Cambridge Analytica to prepare political campaigns, and the publication of algorithms by Frances Haugen showing how the company increases profits at the expense of society by driving hate and arguments or failure to stop the dissemination of material from the Christchurch terrorist attack, has sufficiently rejected users.
After all the situations that put Facebook in a bad light, at the end of October this year, Mark Zuckerberg announced that the platform was renamed “Meta” in order to seemingly distract users and start a new chapter. This name comes from the concept of Metaverse called “new internet”, the idea of which is to build a virtual world connecting millions of users in 3D technology. The idea may seem distant when it comes to an uprising, but the work on its creation has already started and a huge amount of money and experts have been invested in it.
With the implementation of the idea, the first concerns also arise. After so many mistakes and the instigation of toxic relationships on the platform, how would users trust Facebook’s next project? Despite promises to create a safer place for the community, it is almost impossible to control the behaviour of such a large community. Deputy chairman of Augmented and Virtual Reality at Meta, Andrew Bosworth warns, saying:
“virtual reality can often be a “toxic environment” especially for women and minorities”
Will the name change and the new Meta idea change the image of Facebook? Will they manage to create a place friendly to everyone and change the users’ opinion about them? Is it just “sweeping the problem under the rug”? Each of us will have the opportunity to answer these questions, after implementing the idea soon.