This week, Facebook announced its new mission statement. Before I reveal that, here’s a quick refresher on the old one, which I’m sure you read, along with all the other fine print, before signing over your first-born.
It was, of course, “Give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.”
I think we can all agree that mission was accomplished a little too well, and in unexpected ways. So, what’s next for Facebook? What’s their new mission or raison d’être?
Prepare yourself for a world of change. The new mission statement is, “Give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together.”
I know, right? The second half is kind of, sort of different.
All joking aside, it’s a noble goal, and one that seems to acknowledge that social media has a reputation for pitting groups against each other. This age of argument wasn’t necessarily created by social media platforms like Facebook, but has definitely been brought to light by them. It’s also given a very visible platform to people who didn’t have one before, which can be a good thing and a bad thing.
My one complaint, or at least the one I’m going to voice today, is the idea of “giving power.” As you may have noticed, this phrase appears at the beginning of both mission statements, and it’s a little off.
People do not need to be given the power to do things like build communities and whatever “bring the world closer together,” is meant to mean. People already have this power without Facebook. At the end of the day, Facebook is a tool, a social platform that comes in handy for communicating in a variety of ways. Its “power” comes from the people who use it, not the other way around.
That being said, we could all keep the spirit of Facebook’s mission statement in mind when we share. Are we building community or tearing others down? Are we bringing people closer or pushing them further away? Something to think about the next time you post, tweet, or share. Now get back out there and be kind to each other.
…just for fun: