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Is Meta a shield against scrutiny for Zuckerberg? | ticker VIEWS

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Is Facebook’s rebrand just a strategic move to create a portfolio of CEO’s that allow the founder to move into a space that is removed from scandal and scrutiny?

MAT COLE ON

Facebook has officially announced that it will change its name to meta, signalling a new era for the social media giant.

The name change follows months of scrutiny and growing public distrust around the social media giant.

The shift will see a new focus on becoming a computing platform specialising in virtual reality and the metaverse.

Chief Executive and Founder Mark Zuckerberg says the metaverse is the next frontier and from now on the company will be metaverse first, not Facebook first.

But Facebook is under fire – so is Zuck looking to play the blame game?

Mat Cole from ACT media ventures this sort of re architecture of their portfolio, allows the appointment of CEOs for WhatsApp, CEO for Facebook and a CEO for Instagram, but Zuck will always controls the company

META

“Expect a new Facebook CEO, who will be the one facing the senate enquiries, while the founder and actual leader of Facebook will be of wearing Facebook glasses on morning television”

COLE SAID.

“Mark Zuckerberg as a founder, can now move away and create a shield from all the bad press that they’re getting.”

But behind the speeches, feel good stories about Facebook’s growth and ultimately – a rebrand, what will change?

Cole says the data policies across all of their business will not change and has not changed.

“By allowing him to pull in CEOs, what it does is every time that there is a controversy, and Facebook has a an amazing history of 10 years, you no longer have consistent controversies,” he told ticker.

META

“Instead of turning up and sitting in front of Congress and be grilled, he can say no, not me. Go and speak to the CEO of Facebook, or go and speak to the CEO of WhatsApp, or go and speak to the CEO of Instagram.”

Are people all going to flock to this idea of virtual reality?

META

“We’re not all going to buy VR goggles and jump into work. Like that’s that’s just not going to happen,” Cole says.

“Facebook’s users are an older group, which have a less likelihood of being able to jump in and buy virtual reality headsets. They’re just not going to do that.”

Cole says the Metaverse is part of a broader conversation, “a disconnected, interoperable, landscape of technology.”

“So I can take my avatar from work, play, to dating, and all of that can happen in the metaverse. It doesn’t happen in these, centralised environments. And that’s what Facebook talking about.”

“So it’s quite wrong in terms of what the metaverse is. So I think, it doesn’t always have to be in VR goggles, which is a lot of what Facebook is, is talking about adoption being predicated upon.”

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Reports of discrimination against pregnant and disabled workers at Amazon

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Amazon is under fire for allegedly discriminating against some of its pregnant workers and workers with disabilities

New York’s Division of Human Rights filed a complaint against the company with Governor Kathy Hochul announcing the move on Wednesday.

Amazon is being accused of failing to provide these workers with the correct pay, forcing them to take unpaid leaves of absence.

There are multiple reports that the company did not follow guidelines with its workers, one pregnant worker was initially given approval to avoid lifting packages over 11 kilograms, but was then made to lift heavy items anyway by a manager.

Amazon did not provide this worker with accommodation after they were injured and instead placed them on indefinite unpaid leave, according to the complaint.

The company is being examined for its failure to accommodate these workers, and allowing managers to override safety recommendations.

Such actions are against breach New York’s Human Rights Law which protects pregnant and disabled workers from discrimination within a workplace.

Amazon is now being urged to “pay civil fines and penalties to the State of New York” and to fix its discriminatory practices.

Amazon’s spokesperson has denied its wrongful conduct saying the company offers “the best available options to accomodate” such employees.

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U.S. warns against hiring North Korean tech workers

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The U.S. is warning North Korean workers are trying to find IT jobs by hiding their identities

The U.S. believes workers are seeking to steal money for their home country.

Many of them are allegedly pretending to be from other parts of Asia, according to three U.S. agencies.

The State Department says thousands of highly skilled IT workers are sent around the world to generate revenue to help with North Korea’s weapons production.

“The DPRK [North Korea] dispatches thousands of highly skilled IT workers around the world to generate revenue that contributes to its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programmes, in violation of US and UN sanctions.”

U.S. State Department

If North Korea is employing workers to fund its missiles program, the move would be in violation of U.N. international sanctions.

“The United States is committed to disrupting illicit DPRK revenue-generating activities, which may facilitate criminal activity, provide direct support to the DPRK’s unlawful weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs, and threaten international peace and security,” the U.S. State Department said in a statement.

The country has conducted several missile tests in recent months, including a banned intercontinental ballistic missile.

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Apple delays return to the office as COVID rates spike

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Apple has delayed its staff from returning to HQ on a full-time basis

Apple has delayed its workers from returning to the office full time.

Employees who are in the current working in the office two-day-per-week as part of a trial programme will have the option to once again work fully remote if they feel uncomfortable coming into the office.

According to news outlet The Verge, a memo released by Apple’s COVID-19 response team says that its updates are based on current infection rates and hospitalisations.

Apple is also requesting employees who do decide to return to the office to wear masks when in common areas like meeting rooms, hallways, and elevators.

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