Every year Yahoo Finance compiles a survey to find what people believe to be the best and worst companies in the world. This year and perhaps unsurprisingly Meta formerly Facebook takes the crown and by a significant margin.
The survey was conducted between the 4th and 5th of December as an open-ended survey with 1,541 participants. Some other notable mentions in the worst company of 2021 awards included Alibaba in second place, electric care company Nikola and controversial trading company Robinhood.
A Plethora of Problems at Facebook
Throughout the year Facebook has faced a number of public issues which has left a bad taste in the mouths of many. Bringing trust and faith in the company to an all time low. It has faced more antitrust investigations, been criticised for how it has handled the election, the capitol riot, misinformation from the left and right, as well as controlling the narrative around Covid-19.
All of these controversies combined has meant that both the left and the right have their reasons to have a negative feeling towards Facebook. According to the survey one of the main grievances was censorship. Many feel that Facebook has assumed the power of “free-speech police” which has impacted the rights of people to truly say what they like on the platform.
The other side of the coin is for those who felt that Facebook hasn’t done enough to curb the spread of misinformation regarding the Covid-19 pandemic. Beliveing that this act alone has contributed to the total death toll globally due to anti-vax messaging spread on the platform.
The final key issue is aimed at Facebook owned social media platform Instagram. It has been widely reported how Instagram is having a massive negative impact on the mental health of some users. A report even came out stating how Facebook knew that Instagram was “making teenage girls feel worse about themselves” but chose not to do anything about this issue. All in all not a great look for the company and ultimately not that surprising they have won the worst company of the year award.
Meta – “If you don’t like what is being said, change the conversation”
Whilst the 2021 controversies have been plentiful, the Facebook stock price is up 22% year to date. There still has to be some damage control from Facebook to regain some public sentiment.
In a classic PR move often utilized by governments around the world, if you don’t like what is being said, change the conversation. Whilst Zuckerberg in his public video announcement of Meta was stating how the Metaverse was the future and this was Facebook evolving with the times. The skeptical around the world are speculating that this is just a PR attempt to distance the company from some of the recent bad press around the Facebook brand.
Whatever happens, it seems that Facebook still have some work to do in 2022 to regain some favour with the public.
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