March 2022 - Meta | 1st Runner Up
From the moment Meta—the new Facebook conglomerate with big plans to be “the next evolution of social connection” (whatever that means)—was introduced to the world, people had concerns. Not even the name was well received.
Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t have the best track record, proving time and time again that his platforms need less power and more regulation. Meta and its properties, including Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, have recently faced a siege of accusations that the social platforms are dangerous to child and teen mental health. This all came about when whistleblower Frances Haugen leaked documents noting “internal research by Meta found that one in three teen girls said using Instagram made them feel worse about their bodies,” but of course there’s a lot more evidence to support these claims.
Despite rebranding, the company hasn’t been able to escape its past—and Facebook continues to be at the core of several issues, including the Rohingya genocide. The same sketchy algorithms that promote fake news have also been used to dangerously spread posts inciting violence against the Rohingya people. There are no checks and balances to what is being posted, who is seeing it or what the consequences of echo chambers can be.
Meta is a brand new entity and, particularly as it’s pressured to sell Instagram and WhatsApp, has a chance for a clean slate. In our biased opinion, it can and should use a site like Meta.Sucks to try to repair the damage it’s done. Because changing identities clearly doesn’t help.