Facebook's social media platform has always had an issue with misinformation. With the company's upcoming Metaverse planning to bridge the gap between the digital and real world, that issue may no longer stay tied to social media.
Experts warn that the joining of the upcoming metaverse will have drastic effects on how reality is perceived. For example, users could be able to “reality block” content they don't want to see. This means that the current echo chambers fuelled by internet algorithms may only get worse.
AR expertsvs Facebook's Metaverse
Speaking to Insider, AR inventor Louis Rosenberg and entrepreneur Shawn Frayne explained the dangers of Facebook's Metaverse. The two explained that bridging the digital and real world will fracture society.
For example, it’s explained that augmented reality tech could be used to “reality block” things people don't want to see. For an anti-abortionist, this could mean establishments like Planned Parenthood are literally erased from view. Additionally, people could block out things they deem offensive.
The AR experts also claim that the same reality tech could be used to label individuals outside. Based on the interests of Metaverse users, AR could be used to show those likes above people. This would allow the user to know exactly what political affiliations a person has.
Rosenberg told Insider that the future technology could turn the world into “Harry Potter”. Much like the staunch houses of Hogwarts, everyone would be segmented into very specific groups. Rosenberg said: “Instead of us just kind of being in our own information bubbles, we’re going to be segmented into our own custom realities.”
Shawn Frayne continues to explain that these issues will continue into the real world with advertisers and hate speech. For example, Facebook's historic failures to moderate hate speech will not change.
In terms for advertising, AR could be used to alter billboards based on your specific interests. Additionally, advertisers could insert branded products into the hands of people walking down the street.
Both experts believe that these future possibilities are an inevitability. While they won't happen immediately upon the Metaverse's release date, they will happen eventually.