As part of its expansion into the nascent Metaverse, Facebook announced it is changing its name to Meta during its annual Connect conference.
Although the social media platform itself will still retain the Facebook name, the umbrella company will now be known as Meta.
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, said that while Facebook was one of the most used products in the world, the name no longer reflected the true breadth of its ambitions during Facebook’s Connect augmented and virtual reality conference.
The name change intends to reflect the company’s growing ambitions beyond social media with the metaverse, a classic sci-fi term Facebook has adopted to describe its vision for working and playing in a virtual world.
Zuckerberg detailed the company’s ambitions to build the metaverse, a theoretical digital universe with its origins in 1992 sci-fi novel Snow Crash, that Facebook projects will allow us to work, shop, learn and play in virtual reality spaces.
Lately, the company has come under attacks, intense scrutiny from governments and child protection agencies after former member of staff Frances Haugen leaked documents detailing how the company was struggling to regulate hate speech and misinformation and the extent of its own research into the negative effects its platforms had on young people’s mental health and body image.
Facebook announced its second Africa office will open in Lagos before the end of 2021. The office will house a cross-section of Facebook teams from sales, policy, and communications to engineering. It is the company’s latest commitment to Africa’s largest internet market, after it opened a hub space in partnership with Co-Creation Hub, a leading Nigerian startup accelerator, in 2018.
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