In the metaverse of the future, two people could be walking down the same street and see very different things thanks to the AR glasses they’re wearing.
One, who may lean conservative, could “reality block” out aspects they’ve been conditioned to oppose, like a fertility clinic. The other, a liberal, could walk by a gun store and not even know it’s there.
Others could have paid for a third-party “app” that lets them instantly know identifying traits about people they pass on the street thanks to the data that Facebook, now Meta, has collected on its users. The word “Republican” hangs over the head of one passerby in big block virtual letters, for example.
The result is these two people believing that they’re seeing the same street, only they’re not — they are existing in diverging realities within this virtual overlay of the real world.
Experts told Insider that the metaverse could fracture reality as we know it, allowing advertisers and third parties to give people the personalized worlds they desire and making political polarization even worse.
“Instead of us just kind of being in our own information bubbles, we’re going to be segmented into our own custom realities,” Louis Rosenberg, a 30-year veteran of AR development and the CEO of Unanimous AI, told Insider.