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Avatars standing in a Second Life world. Credit: Linden Labs
Reality Check
Media/Telecom Facebook AR/VR

Disney, Facebook and the Risk of a Boring Metaverse

By  |  Nov. 11, 2021 11:00 AM PST
Photo: Avatars standing in a Second Life world. Credit: Linden Labs

Disney CEO Bob Chapek wants a piece of the metaverse, he revealed Thursday evening. Disney’s creative talent is actually “biting at the bit,” as he said, to start making the company’s corner of the metaverse, Chapek added, in comments that inspired more eye-rolling than anything else.

It isn’t difficult to see what Disney could bring to a more immersive internet, however: the company’s “Imagineering” R&D team helped push forward technologies like VR in the past. Disney has also brought its theme parks to digital life with VR games like Star Wars: Tales from Galaxy’s Edge. But Disney is in a similar position to Facebook, now Meta, in that its all-consuming desire to protect its brand could end up being a hindrance on the way to the metaverse. The metaverse, if truly open to user influence, could be stranger than a Disney or Meta is ready to stomach.

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