Zuckerberg Confirms 'Long-Term Vision' for Metaverse as Meta Fires 11,000 Employees – Decrypt
Meta, the parent company of social media platform Facebook, will cut more than 11,000 jobs, or about 13% of its workforce, CEO Mark Zuckerburg revealed on Wednesday.
Zuckerburg said that the move was one of the "most difficult" in the company’s history, which will see Meta take other steps “to become a leaner and more efficient company.”
This includes cutting the Silicon Valley giant's discretionary spending and extending its hiring freeze through the first quarter of 2023, Zuckerburg said in a message to the employees.
“I want to take accountability for these decisions and for how we got here,” Zuckerberg said in the statement. “I know this is tough for everyone, and I’m especially sorry to those impacted.”
The CEO blamed the job cuts on a reversal of online commerce trends following Covid lockdowns, the wider macroeconomic downturn, and increased competition that ultimately caused Meta’s revenue to be much lower than expected.
While the restructuring will see the company make reductions in every organization across Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp—collectively referred to as Meta's Family of Apps—as well as its Reality Labs metaverse division, the latter will be affected less than others.
According to the CEO, despite Reality Labs posting a loss of over $3.6 billion in the third quarter of 2022, Meta has a “long-term vision for the metaverse.”
Launched in August 2020, Reality Labs is Meta's virtual and augmented reality arm that designs hardware and software, including the company’s Oculus virtual reality set and the Horizon World metaverse project.
“Fundamentally, we’re making all these changes for two reasons: our revenue outlook is lower than we expected at the beginning of this year, and we want to make sure we’re operating efficiently across both Family of Apps and Reality Labs,” added Zuckerburg.
Over the course of 2022, Meta has also been rolling out NFT features for Instagram and Facebook, making them available to all U.S. users of the two platforms in September.
The feature allows users to add NFTs on their profiles and currently supports digital collectibles—as it is referred to by Meta—issued on the Ethereum, Flow, and Polygon blockchains, with Solana support also in the plans.
Earlier this month, Meta announced that Instagram is turning to the Polygon blockchain to let its users mint and sell NFTs.
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