What will Mark Zuckerberg's metaverse look like? Like Facebook, but much worse!

The Financial Times has examined hundreds of patents filed by Meta. The menu includes: even more personalized ads that interact with our facial expressions, sensors everywhere, and hyper-realistic avatars...

What will Mark Zuckerberg's metaverse look like? 

To find out, the Financial Times analyzed a hundred patents filed by Meta, most of which were published this month. According to them, the Menlo Park-based firm intends to use our biometric and behavioral data - eyelash movements, facial expressions, nose scratching, and eye gaze - to offer us personalized ads, measure the impact of a campaign, and ensure that our avatars will be as realistic as possible. 

Of course, a patent does not mean that the company will use this technology - and Facebook told the British newspaper that they will - however, it gives a general idea of Meta's vision of the metaverse.

Adapting content to our reactions 

For example, a number of patents mention the collection of biometric data thanks to mini-cameras and movement sensors inside the virtual reality helmets. Such data will be used to adapt the movements of the user's avatar, but also to change what the user sees in the virtual world, describes The Financial Times. A Meta patent, filed on 4 January, outlines a system for tracking a user's facial expressions that will then "adapt multimedia content" based on their reactions.

Meta is also apparently very interested in whole-body movements. In one patent, Meta describes a system with sensors to be placed on the torso. This data could be used to change the display of virtual shops according to the user. One of the patents explains the possibility of a brand participating in a form of auction, such as the bidding system for web advertising spaces today, to have its product appear before the eyes of a user it is targeting.

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A clone factory, including services

A very precise avatar generator has also been designed by the Meta teams, capable of building a virtual double from a photo. "Meta wants to simulate every pore, every strand of hair, every micromovement," observes Noelle Martin, who spent more than a year studying Meta's human surveillance ambitions with the University of Western Australia. "The goal is to create 3D replicas of people, places and things, so realistic that they will be indistinguishable from the real thing, and then insert into that copy of reality all sorts of services... In truth, they are undertaking a global human cloning program."

Therefore, the rebranding of the brand - which has enabled it to see its share price rise - does not mean a change in current business model. Data collection and targeted advertising remain Meta's core business, with virtual reality and biometric data thrown in. In case you had any doubts! 

My biggest fear is that the metaverse will enable ad targeting based on our biological responses to stimuli," worries lawyer Brittan Heller, quoted in the Financial Times. Most people don't know how valuable this is. And today, there is no law against such practices."

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