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Social media companies had an eventful year, starting with Twitter and Facebook banning then-President Donald Trump from their platforms after the Capitol riots. Later in the year the debate over social media's impact on the public exploded when Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen leaked tens of thousands of damning internal documents about the harm the company is causing to its users around the world. Amid the fallout that has included congressional hearings, Facebook rebranded itself Meta Platforms, reflecting its commitment to developing the metaverse. CEO Mark Zuckerberg described the metaverse as a "virtual environment" you can go inside of — instead of just looking at on a screen.

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