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Sunday, November 27, 2022

Facebookers are on their way out. The Metamates are present

Googlers are the workers who work for Google. Amazonians are the people who work for the company. Yahoo’s workers were referred to as Yahoos.

When Facebook, formerly known as Facebook, changed its name to Meta late last year, it created a problem for its workers, who had long been referred to as Facebookers.

There is no longer any debate over the phrase. Meta’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, introduced a new moniker for his company’s workers on Tuesday at a meeting with staff. Metamates is a combination of the words “meta” and “mates.”

Because of the company’s new orientation, Mr. Zuckerberg proposed the word as part of an update of Meta’s corporate principles, which he said required updating. It was a complete surprise when he announced in October that Facebook will be moving toward the so-called metaverse, which is a network of computer systems that are linked to one another through the internet. The move downplayed the importance of the company’s social networking programmes, such as Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, which have come under fire for issues such as privacy and data security, inflammatory material, and disinformation in recent years.

So what happened to Facebook ideals such as “Be bold” and “Focus on effect” after that? They have vanished. “Live in the future,” “Build wonderful stuff,” “Focus on long-term effect,” and “Meta, Metamates, me” have taken their places, according to Mr. Zuckerberg, who made the announcement on Tuesday.

he said in a Facebook post. “I’ve always felt that in order for values to be valuable, they must be principles that excellent organisations may fairly disagree with or highlight differently,” he wrote in a Facebook post.

Silicon Valley corporations have long had their own lingo and cultures that distinguish them from their competitors. There are a plethora of corporate mottos, including “Don’t be evil,” “Innovation leads to innovation,” and “Move fast and smash everything.” Palantir, a big data software business, even put the motto “Save the Shire,” which is a reference to the “Lord of the Rings,” on the T-shirts of its employees. All of this resulted in parodies of the technology industry, such as HBO’s “Silicon Valley.”

Despite the fact that the metaverse is still in its early stages, Mr. Zuckerberg believes that the current ideals constitute a type of fresh start for his organisation. Employees at Meta, on the other hand, reacted differently to the reset on Tuesday.

Hundreds of staff expressed their appreciation for the modifications by posting heart emojis on internal discussion sites. Some employees, though, showed more suspicion in private chat threads, away from the gaze of their superiors.

In a private message that was accessed by The New York Times, one engineer commented, “I don’t comprehend the messaging.” “We’re always changing the names of things, which makes it complicated.”

Another employee said that being a Metamate reminded him of being on the water. “Does this imply that we are on the verge of sinking?” the worker wondered.

According to employee postings seen by The Times, some employees felt the new slogans had a “military inspiration” while others felt they gave them the feeling of being “a cog in a machine.” The new principles were also ridiculed on Twitter by a Meta employee who replaced them with the words “conform” and “obey.” He erased the mail as soon as he received it.

Meta did not respond to a request for comment on the employee postings.

Metamates was created by Douglas Hofstadter, a professor of cognitive science at Indiana University and the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid,” which introduced the term to the public. In a tweet, Andrew Bosworth, Meta’s chief technology officer, said that one of his company’s employees had approached Mr. Hofstadter to ask for suggestions on a new logo.

Jonathan James
I serve as a Senior Executive Journalist of The National Era
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