EU and Meta officials expressed diverging views on decentralizing the metaverse during a panel discussion with officials from Meta, the European Parliament and the European Commission.
Earlier, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen expressed her interest in finding new digital opportunities and trends, like metaverses, in the coming years.
While EU officials who spoke at the roundtable believe that metaverse decentralization is in everyone’s interest, the social media giant champions the idea of a unified metaverse.
An argument for centralization
In its attempt to gain first-mover advantage in the metaverse space, Meta has maintained its commitment to this space. Despite a loss of $3.7 billion in the third quarter of 2022, Meta’s head of European affairs, Aura Salla, said the company still wants to hire up to 10,000 employees in Europe to work on the metaverse.
The announcement contradicts Meta’s decision to announce a hiring freeze in September and lay off thousands of employees this month.
According to Salla, “Our economy, our consumers, our customers will benefit if we focus on creating a single governance.While reaffirming that a centralized Metaverse is not for Meta alone, Salla noted that there is a need to cooperate with businesses, stakeholders, creators, and policy makers for the future of the metaverse.
An argument for decentralizing the Metaverse
On the contrary, a member of the EC’s Digital Transformation Unit, Joachim Schwerin, noted that centralization will kill creativity in the metaverse space. “Whatever approach we arrive at, we cannot arrive at a centralized approach“, maintained Schwerin. Instead, Schwerin argued for multiple solutions, as the gaming world does.
Similarly, Eva Kaili, Member of the European Parliament, noted that centralization would only create gatekeepers in the new digital world represented by the metaverse. “Ensuring people have full power over their digital lives, the data they share and the content they produce is essential“, she said.
A growing market
According to a report by Global Market Insights, the metaverse market will contribute approximately $500 billion to the digital economy by 2028. As of now, the technology is still in its infancy and the approach that she will adopt remains unclear.
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