Facebook renames itself, wants everyone to have VR avatars

So this week Facebook announced it’s renaming itself to Meta, and going all-in on the Metaverse:

They had an hour-long keynote and demo with Zuck explaining and showing possibilities. During this “livestream”, literally 90% of the comments were pretty shocked and suspicious at the new direction, which serves to suck people even more into virtual reality and away from each other:

Reminds me of when they rolled out the newsfeed many years ago (The outrage prompted Zuck to write an official post “Calm, breathe, we hear you.”). The newsfeed culture led to what kind of society we have today – where our news are curated by privately-owned social networks, to maximize “engagement”. People arguing about the latest politics. People wishing each other happy birthday en masse on their newsfeeds, instead of calling each other. The words “like” and “friend” were changed – in some ways, cheapened – by Facebook.

The prevailing economic model of Facebook has been advertising, and now it might be about monetizing content (worlds, items) by digital content creators. It’s interesting that the Metaverse is completely online, where there doesn’t have to be any scarcity, yet the platforms will impose artificial scarcity in order for content creators to get paid. We recently discussed various economic models for digital content on an episode of the Intercoin show.

Power to the People

At Qbix and Intercoin, we have an alternative vision, that’s almost the opposite of Facebook’s. People meeting up in the real world again. People engaging in group commerce in local communities. Liberating people from having to rely on giant corporations to connect them and enable commerce. Check out what we’ve been writing over the years about how things could go:

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This is one of the reasons i’m so excited about what Intercoin are doing. Using this technology to go backwards in time in some sense. We used to drive technology, it was merely a way to speed up or simplify tasks in an effort to make our work & lives easier, but somewhere along the way we’ve lost our way and technology is now driving us.

We all know the negative aspects of technology has brought to our lives. When the computer left the work place and entered our homes, and subsequently into our hands, it really did bring people together. Distant family members and old friends reuniting across the world, new friends being made in chat rooms etc.

Fast forward a few years it seems no-one is living in the moment anymore, the main priority is capturing it on camera to show mostly strangers. People are delving further and further into a digital identity, we all know someone who’s social media is full of them showing off luxurious goods paid for with debt. Their digital projection holding so much importance to them that it seems worth the huge detriment to their actual real physical life and relationships…the longer hours, financial stress and ever shrinking time with family/friends. A follow from a stranger on the other side of the world holding more value than a friendly conversation with their neighbour.

Intercoin can help reverse this. Helping people view the world through a local lens, as well as a global one, is the first step towards a more caring and personable community. Who doesn’t like the idea of the money they spend staying local? The shop owner where you bought your dog food uses that money to pay their kids piano teacher who in turn uses it to buy lunch at a local cafe and so on.

I doubt anyone would prefer getting the very same dog food but their money going to Amazon. As long as the convenience is the same, which it can be with an intercoin/Qbix built community app, then people will always chose this option.

Obviously this is just one benefit to all this as they are plentiful, and probably many more that we are yet to realise.

As someone that’s been “in crypto” for nearly 5 years it’s great to finally see a vision for real adoption where this technology can serve a genuine purpose and be used for good and by everyday people for every day matters.

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FB’s (sorry, Meta lol) crypto projects will all fail because Mark has had control over his board since the beginning of time and he literally doesn’t understand what sharing power or voting really means. You could say the same thing about his non-profit efforts as well. Libracoin was already a disaster and they’re minting their stablecoin on an ERC20 now, lol.

I don’t think VR itself is that dangerous. But the ad-based model definitely is, and we already have the proof that it has had many ill-effects upon society. But if 90% of the comments were negative (that’s the impression I got from it as well), it’s pretty clear that people are ready for something new. And that’s where crypto and projects like these come in.

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I think (and hope) it’ll be a failure also. The idea of a Facebook controlled metaverse is a scary thought, imagine being permabanned by a VR bot for having the the “wrong opinion” on something…

And does anyone actually have any trust in Facebook given their track record? I’ve no idea what the average age of a Facebook user is now but I’m assuming it’s getting older as I don’t see or hear of younger people using it, none of my mates kids are on it. Seems to me like they are pitching this idea to wrong demographic, hopefully.

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I don’t think anyone trusts FB at this point, honestly. Even tech insiders know that they haven’t really been honest about how their algorithms work for a while now.

It’s rife for disruption and this Meta thing strikes me as a desperation play, tbh. Mark literally doesn’t understand what decentralization is because he’s used to getting his way all the time. There is no chance.

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I’m trying to figure out a single positive aspect about Meta… I guess best case scenario people who are not currently in the crypto NFT space get interested then quickly educated and move to another platform sooner than later. That’s kinda what Robinhood did for me.

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Yea I don’t think I am too excited about this. I’m already lacking in face-to-face social interactions because of this pandemic and now FB is introducing metaverse via VR. Nope!

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