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Opinion
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Media

Please Advise! Facebook Needs a New Look!

The social media platform can either get more friendly or more evil. Either way, time to double down.

Steve Burgess 21 Oct 2021 | TheTyee.ca

Steve Burgess writes about politics and culture for The Tyee. Find his previous articles here.

[Editor’s note: Steve Burgess is an accredited spin doctor with a PhD in Centrifugal Rhetoric from the University of SASE, situated on the lovely campus of PO Box 7650, Cayman Islands. In this space he dispenses PR advice to politicians, the rich and famous, the troubled and well-heeled, the wealthy and gullible.]

Dear Dr. Steve,

Mark Zuckerberg has announced that Facebook will be rebranding soon. Any suggestions?

Signed,

Kitten Fancier

Dear KF,

It’s just a shame that “Thanos” is already taken. “Death Star” is probably trademarked too. What names are left for a globe-girdling supervillain? Some possibilities for a new Facebook brand:

Putin-Palooza

Truth in advertising, really. Facebook is already your one-stop shop for every bogus theme and destabilizing contention pushed by the basement trolls of the Russian strongman. Why not make it into a feature?

Eight Posts

More truth in marketing, since that is roughly how many posts/memes seem to keep popping up on one’s page over and over again on a given day. Seen the distracted boyfriend yet today? Or the disappointed dog? Keep scrolling.

John Smith

Excuse me, officer? Is my name Facebook, you ask? Am I that worldwide spreader of toxic misinformation and lunatic conspiracy theories? Why, no... no, that name doesn’t ring a bell... my name is, ummm, John... John Smith, maybe...yeah, that’s right... John something or other...

Could Be True Book

In Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy books, a massive supercomputer called Deep Thought is asked to reveal the meaning of “life, the universe, and everything.” Deep Thought eventually answers: “42.” A random number chosen for the reader’s amusement? Or is there more to it? Did you know that “42” is the ASCII computer programming command for an asterisk, and that an asterisk can stand for anything you want it to be, and that therefore Adams was cryptically saying that the meaning of “life, the universe, and everything” is “Anything you want it to be?” Isn’t that great?

Sure is, recent Facebook meme! And there is no evidence any of it is true. Nor is there any connection to Tibetan monks, another popular theory. Adams often said he chose the number at random. But it sounds like it could be true, doesn’t it? And that is the essence of Facebook or, as we will soon know it, CBTB.

Pre-Snopes Book

This would be a useful rebranding exercise. Facebook is the place you go before checking Snopes to find out that what you just read was bullshit.

Algo-Rhythm Section

Look, here’s an ad for that thing you just Googled! And here’s an ad for that thing you just talked to your mom about! And here’s an ad featuring that weird dream you had last night about a Brad Pitt Only Fans page!

What? It’s a coincidence.

Botox Book

Younger people tend to prefer TikTok.

Classic Superman Centre

Are you upset about the new bisexual Superman? Also the new Superman slogan that drops the part about fighting for the American Way? Would you like to ask what the world is coming to? Do you want to know why we as a society are going to hell in a handbasket? Welcome!

Squid Book

Facebook has truly been the market leader in building real-world dystopian scenarios. But the Netflix series Squid Game has stolen some of that thunder with its own brutal version of societal collapse. Still, this could be another opportunity for Zuckerberg and co. Just as Facebook swallowed Instagram, it could easily take over Squid Game. Making it a real-world event would be an exciting bonus.

Pet Cemetery

Luckily Stephen King misspelled his version, so the correct spelling should still be available. Sad to say that is what much of Facebook amounts to much of the time. People love their pets. Pets die. Facebook memorializes them, all day, every day.

XAnon

Did you know (and this story is true) that Oreos were not the original cream-filled chocolate wafer cookie? That would be the Sunshine Biscuit company’s bizarrely named Hydrox, which debuted in 1908, four years before Nabisco’s knock-off brand. The fact that Hydrox sounds like an over-the-counter medication for either cold sores or constipation probably didn’t help it win the retail battle.

There’s a lesson there for Zuckerberg. QAnon may have got there first, but there is no reason why Facebook can’t muscle in on the territory and become the primary purveyor of dangerous wackadoodle political fantasy, particularly since they are already the primary delivery vehicle for that delicious variety of cream-filled nonsense. Pick another letter and boom, you are XAnon, ready to crush the competition with efficiencies of scale. Imagine the massive number of tinfoil hats Zuckerberg could crank out daily.

Footbook

Just in case, you know, they decide to focus on a particular niche.

Smiley Face-book

A pernicious force spreading falsehoods and hateful fantasies, thereby helping to undermine global democracy and public health? Us? Don’t be silly! We’re just the place where your Aunt Sylvie shares her brownie recipes.

Which now contain horse dewormer. Bon appetit!  [Tyee]

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