Facebook’s Bumpy Path To The Metaverse ‘Every Move Is Interested’
The CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, has transformed the world – but he is facing branding, technological, and regulatory challenges as he attempts to do so again.
It is hardly hyperbole saying that, since its inception in the year 2004, the website Facebook has absolutely taken over entire world, with more than half of the world’s population as users. However, after many years of dominance based on advertising money, the company has closely attempted to demolish that empire and start over.
In October last year, over fifteen years and growing up to 3 billion active users after then-pupil Mark Zuckerberg started up the social networking site from his university dorm, Facebook announced that it had changed its name to “Meta” and would refocus on the company’s virtual reality efforts.
For Meta’s main business, Facebook the reorientation attempt comes at a time when growth has become a major issue.
Since its inception in 2004, Meta revealed in its most recent quarterly results that Facebook had experienced its first decline in daily active users – a key measurement for investors.
The drop from 1.93 billion users in July to September last year to 1.929 billion in the three months to the last month of year was driven by declines in Latin America and Africa, though growth in the US also fell (not for the first time).
However, documents leaked by company whistleblower Frances Haugen show that the company is continuing to lose young users, who are a core demographic for the marketers who provide 97 percent of Meta’s revenue.
In response, Meta, the company’s response to the Chinese-owned platform, has launched Reels. Proulx said, “Not only does Meta have to attempt to win back a falling share of the platform’s key Gen Z audience, however it should also learn how to monetize Reels feature in the process in a better way”. Continuing to improve TikTok’s features will not suffice.”
The increased regulatory monitoring of Meta has all but eliminated one solution to its growth issues: the acquisition of another huge social media channel. Although a forced split of the company is unlikely, a district judge in Washington, DC ruled last month that the United States Federal Trade Commission carries a “plausible” legal claim against Meta, based on the argument that the company has muffled rivalry by purchasing up its rivals WhatsApp and Instagram.