my brief, imperfect thoughts on a very imperfect situation
I originally posted this on my Instagram and wanted to make it a part of my archive here. That said, this is my opinion and I respect if yours is different.
The thing about facebook’s meta mark is how flexible it is—easy to work into secondary applications…like this little piece of immaturity above from my sketchbook. The thing is, seeing it on my WhatsApp and IG load screens was kinda chilling. People will gradually accept the name change and we’ll all get on with it—and I can see why they would want to change it as an umbrella brand for their products. But it’s a big deal when a company this big and with this much sway just up and hits the “delete everything” switch. Admittedly—I do that sometimes on IG because of my complex sharing relationship with this platform going back to the skeuomorphic polaroid frame days—Facebook acquiring the platform made things even more complex. I’m one dude in a sea of users—this is no excuse. I depend on messenger and WhatsApp to communicate with my family as someone living overseas—fact is these platforms work better than traditional phone services. I thought long and hard on this and I’m not getting off platforms like WhatsApp and IG now because I was here before FB was (this, however is subject to change). That said, changing the name / logo doesn’t fix anything and I feel it’s insulting to users because they can see through the gimmicks in the launch materials outlining how amazing the ill-appropriated metaverse will be (or already is I suppose). What it really is: a scary, sort of band-aided patched together distorted “reality.” Ugh. I don’t want to be a part of it.
If they wanted to make it right they would have made this entire relaunch a come to Jesus convo with users about their mistakes as platform developers and our mistakes as users—from the beginning. And believe me, we users are culpable in this thing as well. I was a freshman in college when the native Facebook platform launched—it was an exciting, naive, and stupid time. Nobody knew because there was really no context, but now we have over a decade of context—and it ain’t pretty. I can see it was a ton of work to put all this together and it’s no surprise it’s good because really talented people worked on it. It feels like a desperate, borrowed new coat of paint and not a strip down rebuild, which is badly needed IMO. My aim is not to offend any people I’ve known that work, or have worked at the company. I know you all work hard and it’s oh so easy to spout opinions.