FACEBOOK IS NOW META. Meta's corporate sociotechnical imaginary and the discursive construction of the Metaverse as the social platform of the future
Sammanfattning: The interpretive discourse-analytic framework of the Sociology of Knowledge Approach to Discourse is used to analyze how Meta's senior executives discursively frame the use of augmented reality and virtual reality in order to position the Metaverse as the next social platform during Connect 2021. The findings suggest five interpretive schemas that characterize the Metaverse as a social platform of the future: (a) the Metaverse as the next version of the Internet; (b) the Metaverse as a facilitator of presence and a connector of people; (c) the Metaverse as a marketplace in the Metaverse economy; (d) the Metaverse as a ubiquitous place in our daily lives; and (e) the Metaverse as a space designed in a responsible manner. Furthermore, this research looks into how such framing is strategically used to present the future as feasible and relevant to Meta's stakeholders, thereby constituting a strategic narrative about the Metaverse future. This thesis contends that the purpose of such a narrative is to promote a corporate sociotechnical imaginary, namely a Meta-specific vision of augmented reality, virtual reality, and the Metaverse, which not only encompasses a broader and normative view of the future of society; but also appears to follow the platform capitalism business model.
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