What is a metaverse or metauniverse
Before moving forward, you have to be very clear what is all this metaverse or metauniverse. If you like science fiction, surely both terms will not take you by surprise. Moreover, even without being a fan of this type of content, you may already have an idea close to what it implies because in the cinema we have seen proposals such as Ready Player One where basically its protagonists lived in one.
However, the definition of metaverse could be said to be more or less recent and refers to a virtual space where a group of users can meet in order to be able to interact with each other as if they were doing it in the real world. Of course, with some rules and limitations, but also with unthinkable possibilities in the real world.
Thus, for example, from movies to online video games like the old Second Life and even Fortnite could be considered as a metaverse. Because they allow bringing together millions of users who can interact with each other, access a multitude of options and skip real limitations such as the pain that could be experienced in case someone attacks you or fear death as it would be a matter of restarting and voila.
The metaverse of Facebook
Now that you know what a metaverse is, the next question should be why Mark Zuckerberg wants to create his own. Well, the answer lies in the current state of Facebook as a social platform. In addition to the scandals about privacy and misuse of user data these years, it seems that the arrival of other platforms and ways of consuming content has also affected them.
Especially they are the youngest. they spend more time on networks like TikTok than on Facebook. That is something that he has very well identified as a problem for the future, because when the bulk of current users begin to be of a certain age and it no longer seems interesting to be there publishing statuses, photos, commenting in groups, etc., what will they do if young people They are on much more agile platforms and with other types of more current formats for them.
Well, that is the problem that Mark Zuckerberg wants to tackle in the bud. And to achieve it there is no other option than evolve Facebook and that it becomes something different from the ones we currently know, a simple social network. That idea or future is the metaverse, a place where the company can offer its users a different environment where they can meet and interact with other users, attend events, buy in stores. etc. All this with a different approach to the classic interaction that we have had for years mainly through the use of text messages.
The big problem or challenge is that it is a complicated adventure, but if any company today could carry it out, it is Facebook and for various reasons. The first is that it already has the most important thing of all: a very broad user base. He may not be as much of a soldier as he was years ago, but he is still important and there are the numbers to prove it.
The second is that you have the financial muscle to undertake development at this level. Because it is not the same to create what they now have to an environment where the use of mixed reality is essential.
And finally, Facebook also has the right technology so you don’t have to start from scratch. Because they acquired Oculus years ago and after months of work, the Oculus Quest 2 is one of the most attractive options in these areas.
So you could say that it has it all. It has users, it has development capacity and it has the necessary hardwrea to not depend on anyone other than themselves and to be able to reverse this current situation where users spend more time watching content from others published on TikTok than video how to create something on other networks or simply interacting with other users as if you were doing it in person.
Therefore, despite being a very important technological challenge It is evident that if they are not capable of achieving it, no one could do it in the short or medium term.
The risks of living in a metaverse
The fact that the idea of turning what the Ready Player One novel and film proposes into reality is very attractive to all of us who love technology does not mean that we should stop thinking about the risks of something like that.
Because, as you may already know from all these scandals uncovered years ago, you have to be very careful with how Facebook could use all the information that is generated. Information that would be much closer to reality still, because the user could interact in that virtual space as they would in real life.
So, despite being a project that will still take years to develop, it would not be a bad idea to start considering situations that could occur to be prevented. Thus, there would be no regrets for possible scandals in the future if the rules are established correctly now. Although that is more difficult than creating the metaverse itself.