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The Morning Hustle

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Forbes India – Facebook, Meta, Facebook New Name, Mark Zuckerberg, Metaverse: Is The ‘House Of Zuck’ Strong Enough To Survive The Facebook Train Wreck?

Written by on November 2, 2021

On Oct 28, Zuckerberg introduced the primary main rebrand in Fb’s historical past, renaming the mother or father firm Meta. Picture: Shutterstock

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“It was the very best of occasions, it was the worst of occasions, it was the age of knowledge, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of perception, it was the epoch of incredulity…” so begins Charles Dickens’ epic novel ‘A Story of Two Cities’. And like its protagonist Charles Darnay, Fb’s founder CEO Mark Zuckerberg finds himself trapped within the dungeon of unfavourable public opinion.

With one main distinction. Whereas Darnay was harmless, Zuckerberg appears to have earned most of his unfavourable picture. The latest launch of the Fb Papers, approaching prime of recurring allegations of knowledge fudging and unreliable focusing on, makes it clear that the general public has real grievances to air.

To flee from this symbolic dungeon, Zuckerberg has pulled a switcheroo, very similar to how Darnay was ultimately rescued. On October 28, Zuckerberg introduced the primary main rebrand in Fb’s historical past—renaming the mother or father firm Meta. Any longer, he stated, he’ll focus all his vitality on constructing the Metaverse, which he sees as the way forward for the Web.

For Zuckerberg, and by extension, Fb, it’s really the very best of occasions.

First off, this transfer may save the corporate. By deftly altering the model structure to a Home of Manufacturers mannequin, Zuckerberg has successfully compartmentalised Fb. A Home of Manufacturers mannequin consists of a mother or father model and a number of other baby manufacturers, all unbiased of one another. If a baby model will get into bother, the opposite manufacturers within the household, together with the mother or father model, stay insulated from the worst of the storm. Zuckerberg hopes that Meta will equally be insulated from Fb’s worries. FinTwit [Finance Twitter] even has a reputation for this mannequin—“The Home of Zuck”.

Secondly, this rebranding may save Zuckerberg’s profession. Founder CEOs confronted with comparable issues previously have needed to resign. Assume Uber’s Travis Kalanick or Boeing’s Dennis Muilenburg. Mark doesn’t appear to have any intention of following their path. If something, he appears decided to develop his empire. The transfer to Meta permits him to retain management with out sacrificing something. This might additionally rewrite his legacy. If Meta clicks, Zuckerberg will not be the awkward nerd whose relationship app succeeded past his wildest imaginations, however a tech visionary who ushered in an period of social evolution.

Thirdly, metaverse can develop Fb whereas concurrently scripting the longer term. In early 2021, Fb researchers uncovered two disturbing information—its consumer base was ageing, and it was shedding traction rapidly with the youthful era.

Confronted with this potential lack of advert income, Fb wanted to determine what the youth needed. And the reply appears to be the metaverse. Roblox, a web based recreation platform firm that just lately IPO’ed at a valuation of $41 billion, has efficiently used metaverse to hook the youth onto its video games. It’s clear Fb desires a chunk of the pie. I wouldn’t be stunned if Meta even tries to amass Roblox quickly.

Nevertheless, it’s additionally the worst of occasions for Fb.

Zuckerberg’s response to criticism arising from the discharge of the Fb Papers has clearly proven that Fb doesn’t intend to make any drastic modifications to its underlying enterprise mannequin. And that’s problematic.

Over the previous decade, Fb has grow to be ubiquitous in our each day lives, and it’s firmly related to its founder, for higher or for worse. So long as Mark Zuckerberg stays on the helm and doesn’t transparently tackle the problematic enterprise practices of Fb, no quantity of selling magic goes to cease the guillotine.

Zuckerberg could also be wanting ‘past’ to the Meta (pun meant), however who will repair the current?

The author is a model advertising advisor with P&G, beforehand with Reckitt Benckiser and Swiggy. Views expressed are private. 

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