No One Wants Your Metaverse

Let’s define the future we actually do want

Julio Vincent Gambuto
OneZero
Published in
7 min readFeb 16, 2022

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Enough already. This week, Mark Zuckerberg held an internal meeting at Meta (née Facebook) to announce the company’s new values. Values are part of a company’s DNA, articulated — after paying consultants millions of dollars — to be the guiding principles of a brand. They are meant to help make decisions and dictate behaviors, signal to consumers what to expect when interacting with the brand, and to make sure everyone on staff is toeing the line. (As if Facebook’s turn to the dystopian weren’t frightening enough, if you work at Meta you are now called a “Metamate.”) Mark & Meta put forth these three values to help them forge their way, and ours, into the metaverse: “move fast,” “build awesome things,” and “live in the future.”

Let’s put aside for a second the fact that these are written as active verbs, not by accident. (By contrast, most humans perceive values to be nouns: honor, trust, ambition, transparency, kindness, and the like.) But for those who are unclear what exactly the metaverse is, it is the brainchild of Big Tech: an online world anyone can access through a virtual-reality headset, in which you can interact with friends (as avatars), companies (and spend money), and even the real, physical world with some sort of altered-reality filter. Meta has invested $10B already in its…

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Julio Vincent Gambuto
OneZero

Author + Moviemaker // Happiness in a fucked-up modern world // New book from Avid Reader Press (Simon & Schuster) // Audie Finalist // SXSW // juliovincent.com