Facebook has unveiled new branding in an effort to better differentiate its range of services, as global calls for the social media giant to be broken up intensify.
Facebook has shown off its new company logo, with the social media platform’s full name spelt out in capital letters in a custom font with rounded corners.
The logo is for the company, with the app to retain the classic white ‘f’ on a blue background.
The change will mean the tech titan is “clearer about the products that come from Facebook”, Facebook chief marketing officer Antonio Lucio said in a blog post.
“The new branding was designed for clarity, and uses custom typography and capitalisation to create visual distinction between the company and the app,” Lucio said in the blog post.
The new logo will be used to clearly mark which products and services are owned by Facebook. A “from Facebook” notice will be included on the apps, with the logo changing colours to match the service. On WhatsApp, it will be green while on Instagram it will be the reddish colour that the photo-sharing service’s logo appears on.
Facebook as a company now owns the Facebook app, Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus, Workplace, Portal and Calibra. A study by Pew found that nearly half of American adults surveyed were “not sure” if Facebook owned Instagram or WhatsApp.
The new branding and marketing materials will help to make this more clear, Lucio said.
“People should know which companies make the products they use,” he said. “These apps and technologies have shared infrastructure for years and the teams behind them frequently work together.
“This brand change is a way to better communicate our ownership structure to the people and the businesses who use our services to connect, share, build community and grow their audience.”
The rebranding seems a clear move aimed at placating the growing movement calling for Facebook to be broken up. Several US presidential candidates have now included this in their 2020 policy packages, most prominently frontrunner Elizabeth Warren.
Warren has outlined major plans to break up tech giants like Facebook, with new rules for companies with more than $US25 billion in annual revenue. Her plan would also involve undoing major mergers including Facebook’s acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp.
“Today’s big tech companies have too much power - too much power over our economy, our society and our democracy,” Warren said last month.
“I want to make sure that the next generation of great American tech companies can flourish.
“To do that, we need to stop this generation of big tech companies from throwing around their political power to shape the rules in their favour and throwing around their economic power to snuff out or buy up every potential competitor.”
The growing popularity of this policy seems to have Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg worried, with the founder telling employees in a leaked recording that the plan is an “existential threat” that the company would fight in court.
“If she gets elected president, then I would bet that we will have a legal challenge, and I would bet that we will win the legal challenge,” Zuckerberg said in the recording.
“And does that still suck for us? Yeah.”
Warren was left unimpressed by Facebook’s rebranding.
“Facebook can rebrand all they want, but they can’t hide the fact that they are too big and powerful,” she posted on Facebook. “It’s time to break up big tech.”