An artist whose Instagram account was called ‘Metaverse” for nine years, had her account disabled days after Facebook changed its name to Meta

  • Instagram account with ‘Metaverse’ handle disabled after Meta name change
  • The account was created by artist Thea Mai Bauman in 2012. It had 1000 followers.
  • It was removed when Instagram’s parent company Facebook changed its name 
  • Instagram eventually restored it, stating that it was incorrectly removed to impersonate.

After Facebook’s name change to Meta and the subsequent account suspension of an artist who had been using the Instagram handle ‘Metaverse for nearly a decade, her account was disabled.

The account was created by Australian Thea Mai Bauman in 2012. It documents her time studying fine arts in Brisbane and her travels to Shanghai where she founded an augmented reality company called Metaverse Makeovers.

Her creative work was also posted under the @metaverse handle. She had less than 1,000 followers by the time Facebook’s parent company announced that Meta would be its new name.

Artist Thea-Mai Bauman, whose Instagram handle was 'Metaverse' for almost a decade, had her account disabled days after Facebook announced its name change to Meta, it has emerged

Thea Mai Bauman was an artist whose Instagram account had been called ‘Metaverse for nearly a decade’. Her account was disabled after Facebook changed its name to Meta.

Is there a metaverse?

You can communicate, play and work in virtual space with people from other places than yours through the’metaverse. 

Facebook explained that you can connect with friends and work, play or learn from them, as well as shop, make, and share your creations. 

‘It’s not necessarily about spending more time online — it’s about making the time you do spend online more meaningful.’

Facebook may be the leader in the metaverse. However, the company explained that there is no single product you can make for it. 

The metaverse is just like the internet. It exists whether Facebook’s there. 

It won’t happen overnight. These products may not be realized fully for the first 10-15 years. 

Five days later, and having received messages from strangers offering to buy her Instagram handle, as well as one saying: ‘fb isn’t gonna buy it, they’re gonna take it’, Bauman found that her account had been disabled.

The screen displayed a message that read “Your account was blocked because you pretend to be somebody else”.

“This account represents a decade in my life. I didn’t want my contribution to the metaverse to be wiped from the internet,’ Baumann told the New York Times. 

Facebook rebranded its parent company in October and now goes by the name Meta.

Meta is CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s vision of the company’s transformation into shared augmented realities, in which users can work and play within virtual worlds. 

Zuckerberg attempted to discredit the social media giant from mounting scandals. This was after whistleblower documents revealed that its platforms had caused harm and inflamed anger.  

But Baumann’s treatment has further enraged critics, some of whom said it illustrated the power and control Meta wields over individual user accounts with its various policies and algorithms. 

Rebecca Giblin from the Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia (University of Melbourne) stated that Facebook has the essentially unlimited discretion to take people’s Instagram user name.

Bauman (pictured) used the handle @metaverse and had fewer than 1,000 followers when Facebook announced at the end of October that it was changing its name to Meta

Bauman (pictured), used the @metaverse handle and had less than 1,000 followers. Facebook made the announcement at the end October that it would change its name to Meta

Elle added that the @metaverse example demonstrates the power of Facebook and that users are essentially deprived of any rights under Facebook policies. 

Baumann finally got her account back a month ago after appealing to Instagram.

The social media company’s spokesperson said that it was incorrectly deleted for impersonation and added: “We are sorry for this error.”

It was not explained why the flagging had occurred for impersonation.

Instagram refused to answer any further questions regarding whether the account had been disabled due to its association with Facebook’s Rebranding. 

Meta’s scandals throughout the years, from human trafficking to selling user data 

Meta personnel have long reported that they worry about hate speech polices by the company.

Facebook algorithm flooded its users with conspiracy theories and extremist content based upon their political beliefs.

Meta executives were aware that 32 percent of girls believed Instagram was making their insecurities more severe. But, they continue to edit the beauty filters on Instagram.

Insta bombards people with photos and videos featuring thin women and other anorexics with images and videos.

Meta executives were aware that it was losing popularity among younger people, but they kept the numbers secret from investors. 

Despite monitoring several right-wing accounts, staff failed to predict the Capitol riot of January 6. 

Apple threatened to pull the app out of the App Store because it did not police trafficking in maids from the Philippines.

Mark Zuckerberg personally accepted requests by Vietnam’s Communist Party to suppress anti-government dissidents. 

Facebook ignored and delayed recommendations from experts regarding how it could curb misinformation about anti-vaccines that was spread via its platform.

Facebook was fined $5 billion by the Federal Trade Commission in 2019 after it allowed 87,000,000 US profiles to have been harvested to allow them to use that information for political ads.

Facebook was accused of facilitating the spread of misinformation during the 2016 US presidential election.

Meta reached an agreement last Monday with the government to pay an amount of $14.25million to resolve civil claims that it discriminated against American workers. 

Last Tuesday in the U.K., the company was fined £50.5 million ($70 million) after failing to provide enough important information to the competition regulator investigating the firm’s takeover of GIF sharing platform Giphy.

Mark Zuckerberg was criticized for his public statements about Facebook that were often in contradiction with company messaging.