Mark Zuckerberg wants his employees to be 'Metamates,' putting their 'ship' and crew before themselves
- Mark Zuckerberg updated his company's values Tuesday.
- One is the saying "Meta, Metamates, Me" to reflect the naval adage of putting ship and crew first.
Mark Zuckerberg rolled out new company values on Tuesday, including one based on a maritime saying.
The CEO of Meta, formerly known as Facebook, said in a post on his Facebook page that he had told employees in a virtual all-hands meeting that he wanted the workforce to adopt a new motto: "Meta, Metamates, Me."
"Meta, Metamates, Me is about being good stewards of our company and mission," he wrote. "It's about the sense of responsibility we have for our collective success and to each other as teammates. It's about taking care of our company and each other."
It refers to the naval "ship, shipmates, self," which Meta's chief technology officer said was something Instagram had been using for a while internally. It's long been discussed in business organizational circles as a way to increase efficiency.
"Fun fact: Metamates was coined by none other than Douglas Hofstadter himself after an employee cold emailed him for ideas after our rebrand. I love it!" Meta CTO Andrew "Boz" Bosworth wrote on Twitter, referring to the famed professor of cognitive science and other fields.
—Boz (@boztank) February 15, 2022
Zuckerberg made some other announcements during the meeting, like the company's move away from the value of "move fast," which he said would be tweaked to "move fast together." Facebook is known for its early-days anthem of "move fast and break things."
He also said employees weren't supposed to "nice ourselves to death," according to The Verge's Alex Heath. That bit wasn't included in Zuckerberg's post, though it did touch on being direct and "willing to have hard conversations" with colleagues.
Zuckerberg and his company are still reeling from a firestorm last year when the so-called Facebook Papers indicated that Meta had found evidence its products had negative impacts on users but undermined efforts to implement solutions for the sake of profits. (The company has said the internal documents don't paint a complete picture of its efforts to weed out bad actors on its platforms).
So when the company announced its main corporate entity was rebranding under the name Meta, critics scoffed at the change as a means to distract the public from its problems.
The idea was to refocus its public image on the budding metaverse, a hot-button term that's been used to describe a theoretical next phase of the internet, in which we play, live, and work in a spatial experience using augmented reality and virtual reality. But much needs to happen before such a digital space materializes.
And in the meantime, Meta suffered the largest single-day valuation wipeout in American corporate history, with its market cap plummeting by $240 billion earlier this month after the company posted worse-than-expected fourth-quarter financials.
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