What is the metaverse? Well, some define it as a 3D virtual world that people will be able to step into, but it is a bit more complex than just a VR experience. Instead think of the metaverse as a network of decentralized, interconnected, interoperable and immersive spaces within the digital and physical realm where people can interact in social, work and play environments using virtual reality headsets, augmented reality glasses, smartphone apps, or other devices.
The metaverse is meant to change the world similarly to the way electricity and the invention of the internet changed the way we live our lives forever. The goal is eventually for our real and virtual lives to be seamlessly integrated.
Today’s generation is heavily involved in tech and virtual reality. This means GenZ are likely to be the first to immerse themselves into the metaverse. GenZ has become so accustomed to technological development that they are less likely to see distinctions between the physical world and the virtual world. Studies performed by Razorfish and Vice show that 65% of GenZ believe their online relationships are just as meaningful as their offline ones.
Even more astounding is Gen Z really sees a permanent future in the metaverse, with 52% saying that they would like to make money from the metaverse and 33% saying that they see themselves building future careers in these spaces. This push from GenZ toward a virtual life pushes brands to make themselves available, in spaces like the metaverse spending money and developing career paths.
For GenZ, a generation that has grown up with the internet, it is easy to see why 52% of users feel more like “themselves” in the metaverse than they do socialize in real life. This is worrisome to experts who fear too much time in the metaverse will negatively impact our ability to interact in our physical lives and worsen issues that are already rampant like low self-confidence and anxiety. As proven by the Razorfish study the metaverse can provide a sense of community and escapism for those who need it, but overuse can derail our healthy habits and take a toll on our health.
There are also concerns about safety and privacy in the metaverse. The metaverse will potentially collect a lot of personal data on every user, to improve user experience. How will this data be protected against misuse? How will we protect kids who are logging on and regulating what they see? Much of how existing laws will be applied to metaverse crime, as well as the potential creation of new laws in the metaverse remains unknown.
By: Jocelyn Sandoval
Sammis|Ochoa is San Antonio’s fastest-growing public relations and digital marketing agency. It is the 2020 recipient of the TinyAward for Happiest Employees in Public Relations. It also ranks as one of San Antonio’s best PR firms by Design Rush. The firm is headquartered in San Antonio and serves clients in Austin, Houston and San Antonio. Email email@example.com or call 210.390.4284 to amp up your PR game!