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facebook’s rebrand as ‘meta’ reveals new infinity-like logo, and the internet reacts

FACEBOOK REBRAND AS ‘META’ REVEALS ITS METAVERSE PLAN

facebook founder mark zuckerberg announced earlier this week that the giant tech company is now changing its name to ‘meta’ – with a new logo resembling a distorted infinity loop. this decision puts a spotlight on the founder’s next step in connecting people virtually, which he calls the ‘metaverse’ plan. naturally, right after the news, the internet began flooding with opinions, speculations, and unavoidable criticism.

at the end of his keynote speech during the connect 2021 conference on october 28, zuckerberg highlighted that the facebook rebrand as ‘meta’ was done in an effort to truly represent everything that the company does and will do. in greek, the word ‘meta’ translates to ‘beyond’ – echoing zuckerberg’s belief that ‘there is always more to build’. he goes on stating that the ‘brand is so tightly linked to one product that it can’t possibly represent everything that we’re doing today, let alone in the future’. 

enter facebook’s ‘metaverse’ plan – a vision for the future where virtual and augmented realities become fully integrated in the company’s product and services. ‘the metaverse is the next evolution of social technology — where you can share immersive experiences with people even when you can’t be together in person, and do things together you couldn’t do in the physical world’,  writes facebook on its website blog.

THE META SYMBOL, EXPLAINED

furthermore, this all-encompassing new name is met with a new logo that facebook explains was ‘designed […] to live in motion and 3D’.  the company shaped the new symbol as a continuous loop that morphs and takes on different meaning depending on the viewer’s vantage point; the symbol looks like an M for ‘meta’  from one angle and an infinity sign from another – reflecting the endless layers of the metaverse.

building on that thought, ‘the meta symbol was designed to dynamically live in the metaverse — where you can move through it and around it. it can take on infinite textures, colors and movement, capturing the creativity and imagination of a 3D world. it was also important that the symbol take on a blue gradient and pull in the color of our core products, connecting our future to our company’s origins,’ says facebook.

now- where does the infinity logo come from? one theory dictates that it finds its origins in the ‘ouroboros’ symbol. historically symbolizing infinity and the cycle of birth and death, the ‘ouroboros’ depicts a snake or dragon biting its own tail while contorted into a horizontal the ‘ouroboros’ symbol

there’s also talk of the ‘eight dynamics’ or ‘octave of creation’ principles which are based on the creation of life and the urge to exist for infinity. from the division of cells (mitosis) to ancient egyptian scriptures, the eighth step seems to always be associated to the act of creation and to a new ‘life’ forming. this concept eventually seeped into other disciplines and cultures – like the 8 note octave system in music – as a way to reflect how things perpetually renew every 8 steps ad infinitum.

AND THE INTERNET REACTS…

once the new design surfaced, the digital community stepped in with some thoughts. some criticized the new infinity-like symbol as being quite outdated and overused in company logos over the years. bill gardner, founder of the online database logolounge, explains how the continuous loop symbol was a trend that took off back in 2008, with too many companies adopted it in their logo designs ever since. conducting a search on logolounge,  gardner found over 1,200 variations of the infinity symbol in brand logos. more surprisingly, a very similar name and design to that of facebook’s was created back in 2015 by maria grønlund for a sleep tracker startup.

the font choice for the new logo took a hit as well. german typographer erik spiekermann had created an eerily similar font back in the mid-1980s called  – you guessed it – ‘meta’. the designer cynically responded to the font choice in a tweet where he insinuated that his design is now – inevitably – facebook’s.

 

project info:
name: meta
designer: facebook
year: 2021

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