Following harassment complaints in metavers, Facebook introduces “virtual personal space”

Meta (formerly Facebook) betting on metavers seems to be very expensive for the company at the moment. Following the latest financial report, which revealed that the VR / AR and metavers division lost $ 10 billion in 2021, the company’s shares fell by 25%. However, the company is moving forward with this plan, which is a long-term one, and after the latest scandals related to its social networking in VR, Horizon Worlds, Meta announces the possibility of users to activate a “personal space” to avoid virtual harassment.

The Facebook metaverse becomes a more “secure” space, preventing the virtual approach of people

Recently, articles about women who felt sexually harassed in the Facebook “metaverse”, the social spaces called Horizon Worlds and Horizon Venues, came to the press, accessible from devices such as Oculus Quest or Meta Quest 2. When they created these social spaces, Meta did not think about the fact that some users could harass others by invading personal space, so this feature appears only now.

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According to the announcement, the users of the two Horizon applications will have the new “Personal Boundry” activated by default and without the possibility of being deactivated. At least for now. This creates an invisible barrier for others, 60 cm in all directions, in the virtual space. Thus, other users can no longer get very close to the avatar of those who use this feature. Between two users, the minimum space between them will be more than 1 meter, and Meta warns users that they will have to extend their hands to the maximum if they want to clap their hands, from now on.

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meta horizon worlds personal boundry 2

This is only the first version of the personal virtual space that Meta integrates into Horizon Worlds. The company says it will monitor how users respond to this new feature and will allow over time, based on feedback, the ability to customize certain aspects of personal space with new virtual buttons and interface elements designed specifically for it. In time, this capability will probably be able to be disabled on demand.

source: Meta

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