Wednesday, December 01, 2021

Let This Motherfucker Lobotomize Pissants Into Streamlined Consensus Reality - And We're Done For...,

FT  |  From December 1, Facebook Inc’s stock ticker FB will be relegated to the dust of time. The world’s largest social media company will instead officially morph into Meta Platforms, to trade under the official ticker MVRS. The move follows Mark Zuckerberg’s bold decision to tie the company’s future evolution with the development of what is loosely described as the metaverse. In coming years, Zuckerberg hopes, people will transition to seeing his empire as primarily a servicer to this new digital realm. 

That means investors in the near $1tn market capitalisation company — and broader society — will have to get a grip on what exactly is the metaverse. It’s not that easy to describe. Today, it exists on many disjointed planes — from gaming universes to virtual conference call systems. Its first and most famous incarnation was probably the Second Life platform, notorious for being a flop although it still boasts some 200,000 active daily users.

Zuckerberg’s vision will benefit from far superior tech. “The metaverse will feel like a hybrid of today’s online social experiences expanded into three dimensions or projected into the physical world,” reads the Facebook spiel. But it’s also likely to be an attempt to standardise the metaverse’s consensus reality so that value can be harvested from users in even more creative ways. That may sound alluring to investors, but economists, politicians and activists should take heed. Facebook’s move may also be a jarring acknowledgment that for some tech leaders, the base reality of our world is at risk of losing its investment appeal relative to the metaverse. 

BBC documentary maker Adam Curtis’ once opined that “all of us in the west — not just the politicians and the journalists and the experts, but we ourselves — have retreated into a simplified, and often completely fake version of the world”. 

The forward march to the metaverse pushes this trend to the extreme. It sends the message that perhaps our true world is so corrupted, so divided and so unfair, that it isn’t worth saving after all. Alternatively, we can photoshop reality to the point we can all pretend everything is as pretty as we experience it in our own heads. Also known as cultivating delusions: don’t worry about your lousy life, come join us in your own dreamworld.

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