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METAVERSE: BETWEEN OPPORTUNITIES AND PSYChOLOGICAL RISKS

Closing session
 

Metaverse is the buzzword in every conversation since Marc Zuckerberg announced the creation of his metaverse and cleverly renamed the company that runs Facebook to Meta. Of course, XR professionals have been familiar with virtual worlds for many years. These worlds already have the potential to host many professional and recreational activities, as has been mentioned in several conferences of this edition of Stereopsia EUROPE 2022.

For the closing of this 14th edition, we want to address this topic again, but from a different angle. Indeed, it is appropriate to underline the extraordinary opportunities of virtual worlds and to salute their large-scale access, both for companies and for the general public. Nevertheless, it is absolutely vital to raise essential questions about future users who, unlike their avatars, will remain real flesh and blood human beings.

What can be the consequences of an extended immersion? What are the consequences on the mental health of those who are already more sensitive in the real world? What are the risks as to their ability to tell the difference between what’s real and what’s virtual? Health care professionals and technology experts must take the necessary precautions to make these new opportunities safer, and to ensure that users and/or clients are protected from societal risks or dangers that could alter their mental health.

Our experts will debate these thorny issues at the closing conference of Stereopsia. Don’t miss it.