Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s on Thursday made an announcement that he’s changing his company’s name to Meta Platforms Inc. In explaining the rebrand, Zuckerberg said the name Facebook doesn’t encompass everything the company does anymore.
Zuckerberg has described it as a “virtual environment” you can go inside of — instead of just looking at on a screen. Essentially, it’s a world of endless, interconnected virtual communities where people can meet, work and play, using virtual reality headsets, augmented reality glasses, smartphone apps or other devices.
Here is what we know so far about Facebook’s rebranding exercise:
What is Metaverse?
“Metaverse,” a virtual computer-generated space where people can interact. It includes other growing businesses that aren’t its namesake site, such as virtual reality hardware branch Oculus and Horizon Worlds, virtual reality software that’s still in beta testing mode.
The change comes with a new logo designed like an infinity-shaped symbol, slightly askew, almost like a pretzel.
Will the Facebook and other apps change its name?
Facebook the app, where users post personal updates and register likes, is not changing its name. Nor are Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger. The company’s corporate structure also won’t change. But on Dec. 1, its stock will start trading under a new ticker symbol, MVRS.
Mark Zuckerberg showed video demos of what the metaverse could look like, with people connecting as avatars and being transported to digital versions of various places and time periods. He said that the metaverse would need to be built with safety and privacy in mind.
Mark Zuckerberg pledged that the metaverse will have privacy standards, parental controls and disclosures about data use that his social network has famously lacked. “Ads are going to continue being an important part of the strategy across the social media parts of what we do, and it will probably be a meaningful part of the metaverse, too,” Zuckerberg said in the company’s most recent earnings call.
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