Meta’s Metaverse to face ‘Online Safety Bill’ in the UK


An ‘Online Safety Bill‘ has come into existence in United Kingdoms recently. The UK government is drafting a bill aiming to prevent illegal content, harmful materials, and protect users from a security breach. According to today’s reports by Financial Times, Meta’s Metaverse project will be subjected to the bill and uncompromising laws.

UK’s Digital Minister, Chris Philp, confirmed in a report that he doesn’t believe in Meta’s privacy and security policy. According to him, Facebook hasn’t done enough to take care of users’ privacy seriously and police the digital environment from anonymous threats. The Government implies encouraging the digitalization of the world without compromising legislation and laws.

According to Lorna Woods and William Perrin, Trustees at Carnegie UK, the technology companies can’t outrun the regulations in the metaverse. Meta cannot leave behind the laws and rules in metaverse as it does with Facebook. However, the analysts withstand the safety regimes and want the bill to get enforced as soon as possible.

A few days back, Meta marked substantial regulatory risks from its metaverse project to investors in a securities filing. As a result of which, the UK decided to draft the ‘online safety bill’ in the best interest of users. Meta had already disposed of US$10 billion in building its augmented-virtual reality division. The company said it has already allocated $50 million into its research & development area for security & privacy in the virtual world.

Core elements of ‘online Safety Bill’

According to the analysts on the safety bill, a few areas on metaverse are still unclear and demand much attention. A clear definition has not yet emerged. A few points of discussion are:

  • Is metaverse either a single online immersive environment or a series of interconnected environments?
  • A large amount of computing power is needed to design, build and run the environment.
  • Companies have a variety of business models from advertising to a subscription to cryptocurrencies, these could include commerce with and between users inside the including paid user labor.
  • Within the metaverse, people can interact with each other through speech, text, physical interaction of avatars, or game-like elements such as props, spells, weapons, etc.
  • There are technical, systems, and process interoperability between environments to varying degrees – people can move in some form from one environment to another but perhaps not universally.

It reflects, that Metaverse can lead to new possibilities of groping and harassment. What if the avatars are assaulted in virtual reality or a player’s avatar is hacked? Likewise, Meta’s virtual reality boss, Andrew Bosworth, admits that virtual reality can lead to a ‘toxic environment’ principally for minors.

Meta seems to have fathomed the security concerns and legislation. While few other knotty problems include incorporating blockchain-based payment systems. Consequently, Meta has already notified its investors about the major degree of uncertainties and legal risks in the coming future.

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