“Fixes” In Facebook


Grace Wesselhoft, Staff Writer

“If you just work on stuff that you like and you’re passionate, you don’t have to have a master plan with how things will play out”–words that  Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of the online social network site Facebook, may live to regret..  

Many parents and teens are familiar with many social networking sites, including Facebook. People use Facebook to connect with family, friends, and people across the world. The network itself has about 2.9 billion users in total. With new people adding to that everyday. 

In late October, CEO Mark Zuckerberg, made an announcement that the company would be changing its name from Facebook to Meta. Meta has been an online social technology company that has the overall goal of helping people and other businesses expand and grow. Meta, in other words, wants to help companies and businesses go above and beyond with their ideas and propositions.

The real idea behind this is that Meta will help promote the company for bigger ideas and bigger plans–not just social media. The company has also decided to remove the access to facial recognition tools. People who try and access the app will no longer be able to use facial recognition of any kind. Due to the amount of people worried about the unknowns that come with facial recognition, the business decided it would be best to remove the whole thing, and delete around a billion faces from their systems. 

Elkhart High School staff member, Jeff Miller, has been on Facebook for over a decade. He says, “Yes, I have had a Facebook account since 2005–when I was in college. I have honestly not paid much attention to what is happening,” he confides, referring to Facebook’s new branding of name. “Facebook is such a gigantic conglomerate at this point; most people don’t even realize how far the reach of the company is and how much it truly encompasses. The actual Facebook social media platform is just a small section of the overall corporation,” he adds. “My best guess on the changes is because the company wants to continue to try and be at the forefront of innovation, like greatly augmenting the digital or virtual world, as well as trying to create some other news besides the negative light being shed on Facebook for the past several months (might even be longer than that).” Concluding, Miller states a bit cynically, “I don’t know the CEO, but I doubt he gives much thought to the opinions of the media towards him or his company. I don’t think most billionaires think twice about others’ feelings regarding who they are. Twitter > Facebook.”

Elkhart High School teacher Mrs. Luann Burlingame has also been on Facebook for over a decade, “I think I have had a Facebook account since 2008. I at least get on Facebook daily, just to check on my former students both in the States as well as Brazilians–and my family.” Clarifying this a bit, Burlingame adds, “I love to connect with my Brazilian students, where I taught 3rd grade for three years. They are adults now,” she continues, “many married with a family already…Makes me feel old!”

As for her continuation with Facebook?  “I honestly love it as a tool for speaking truth and spreading positivity,” Burlingame admits. “I don’t want to cut myself off from those that I love that lie far away.” Yet, she does recognize that the direction it is heading reflects what is happening in society as a whole. “I think our culture speaks volumes. Many people have lost their civility and mutual respect,” Burlingame asserts. “It has happened quickly and spilled over into social media. Sometimes I think I should shut off Facebook from my life, because I despise reading the negativity.”

Yet, Burlingame also realizes that Facebook is still experiencing some growing pains. “I would think the CEO is concerned about how Facebook has evolved into something he did not intend to happen,” she explains. “I would think he would also feel uncertain of how to control it.” So, what would Facebook look like in a perfect world? “ I would love to see humanity returning to what is good and right; also putting others before themselves. Additionally, I would like to see common sense and good judgment filters return to what people ‘feel.’ We can ‘feel’ many things, but those things are not always necessary to speak–nor are they encouraging or helpful.” 

With Facebook now facing problems about the amount of power and control the company should have over its content and use, the government is cracking down on social media sites and dictating the content they can publicly post about. The big fear now will not be Facebook itself but big government.