Mark Zuckerberg Just Buried His Metaverse Dreams

Shiny object syndrome at its finest

Stephen Moore
6 min readApr 19, 2023
Image: Badly edited by author

“People will look back a decade from now and talk about the importance of the work being done here.”

Forget a decade; we didn’t even make it six months.

That statement was the rallying cry Mark Zuckerberg told investors in Meta’s Q3 earnings call late last year. It was justification in the face of a changing tide. His shareholders disagreed. Some almost begged Zuckerberg to steer away from the Metaverse and focus on the core products. In an open letter to Meta, one investor asked with “serious conviction” that the company streamline, focus its path forward and drastically cut spending on the Metaverse.

The investor wrote this zinger which summed up the recent struggles:

“Meta has drifted into the land of excess — too many people, too many ideas, too little urgency. This lack of focus and fitness is obscured when growth is easy but deadly when growth slows and technology changes.”

The “excess” has been spectacular. In 2021 and 2022, Reality Labs, the division housing metaverse projects, recorded a cumulative loss of nearly $24 billion, including $13.7 billion last year alone. That’s an insane overspend for very little to show for it.



Stephen Moore

Writer, editor, part-time furniture maker. Subscribe to Trend Mill for critical takes on our dystopian metaverse hellscape future -