Remember Meta’s Horizon Worlds? You know, the Metaverse application being propped up as the next big thing for VR? Well, rumor has it that CEO Mark Zuckerberg is desperate to get the app into as many hands as possible to make it appear less of a failure. That means letting minors (ages 13 to 17) onto the virtual reality platform.
If you’re familiar with Facebook or Instagram, you’ll know that Meta’s products are plagued with security/privacy concerns, deceptive advertising, and possible adverse effects on mental health. So, why not introduce all those things to kids? US politicians appear to be taking a stand against the faltering tech giant.
Two senators, Edward Markey (D. MA) and Richard Blumenthal (D. CT), have expressed concerns about Mark Zuckerberg’s plans to open the Horizon Worlds app to minors. Their worries are not misplaced since Meta has a sloppy track record regarding what is advertised on the company’s various applications, citing failures “to stop ads for tobacco, alcohol, and eating disorder content from targeting teens.”
While I have no love of politicians, I can appreciate Markey not mincing words when it comes to Meta’s failings, stating in a Tweet: “@Meta has completely lost the public’s trust and this latest attempt to bring kids onto the Metaverse is just another flagrant attempt to exploit young people for profit. @SenBlumenthal and I are calling on Meta to halt this dangerous plan.”
.@Meta has completely lost the public's trust and this latest attempt to bring kids onto the metaverse is just another flagrant attempt to exploit young people for profit. @SenBlumenthal and I are calling on Meta to halt this dangerous plan. pic.twitter.com/9IHwwdvPOM
— Ed Markey (@SenMarkey) March 2, 2023
The letter is concise and does not cite any sources when it comes to pediatricians. Zuckerberg’s company has a lot of problems, but the letter comes off more like a publicity stunt, which only garnered 136 likes when this article was published. The story from PC Mag says that the Democratic senators sent the letter to the embattled CEO. Why not just reach out to him in the Metaverse? Oh, yeah … the Metaverse is a little dead.
Meta is getting hit on all sides. After laying off thousands of employees, the Meta board decided Zuckerberg needed $14M for his personal security.[Source: PC Mag] [Source: MSN]
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