In the long run, social media as we know it might not only come to fragment, but radically evolve as it becomes integrated in today’s tech trends such as web3 and the metaverse. Meta has positioned itself as the spearhead of this revolution and its strategy to move from 2D to 3D is as risky as it is ambitious. Last month, the tech giant reported it lost $2.8 billion on its metaverse project, while everyone made fun of Zuckerberg’s avatar. Meta may have popularized “Metaverse” as a concept, but the race to embed social media in new technologies is not limited to Meta as a contender. Some companies, like new startups Niche and DSCVR, are building social platforms on blockchain technology to let users monetize communities themselves. By the end of this decade, the 2D newsfeeds gracing our screens might have become internet history.
Nevertheless, it remains uncertain whether social media users will be as eager to adopt the metaverse and web3—and if so, when they will do so. Furthermore, the adoption will likely look different across the world. While the Western world may be reluctant, one of the most digitalized societies in the world, South Korea, will be more inclined to embrace the metaverse. Our preoccupation with making fun of Zuckerberg’s attempts in the West is creating a blind spot for Southeast Asia. Perhaps more growth can be expected there as these countries are both culturally and economically willing to take the lead in building the Metaverse.