This week in The Metaverse: Kim Kardashian’s ‘new sex tape’ about roblox, invulnerable testicles and immortal avatars

Things are moving fast in the metaverse and the wider world of Web3 as a whole. Depending on who you ask, this futuristic blockchain-based space is either the next big thing for marketing — and pretty much everything else — or an overrated fad. Here’s what you need to know from last week:

Kim Kardashian threatens to “burn” [Roblox] on the damned earth

Kim Kardashian threatened to sue Roblox after a game hosted on the platform that was advertised “Kim’s new sex tape” was revealed. Kardashian first learned about the alleged tape when her six-year-old son Saint came across the digital ad on Roblox, which also included an image of Kardashian crying. The fallout from the incident was captured on a recent episode of “The Kardashians,” where Kim called Saint’s father, Kanye West, and recounted the incident in tears. Roblox says it has banned the developer behind the game, and the platform has emphasized its commitment to content moderation and “zero tolerance for sexual content of any kind.” This isn’t the first time that Roblox, which launched in the mid-2000s as a video game for young children, has found itself in the spotlight, facing allegations of sexual misconduct on its platform. He had a frequent problem with virtual sex parties, known colloquially as “apartments”, for example. Frequent controversies over the Roblox game point to a deeper problem facing the Metaverse as a whole: How can you effectively control a virtual space that is not under any single authority or jurisdiction? All we can say is that “metaverse lawyer” may soon begin to become a mainstream (and high-paying) job title.

Sandbox targets $4 billion valuation with new funding round

The Sandbox – a video game that has become one of the most popular areas of virtual development in the metaverse – is said to be aiming to raise $400 million in its next round of funding in order to reach a valuation of more than $4 billion. The company plans to work with “new and existing investors,” according to a report from Bloomberg, which received the leaked information from sources who requested anonymity. Born as a mobile game in 2012, Sandbox entered the Web3 space in 2018 when it introduced a market for in-game NFT. Since then it has become one of the few platforms – along with Decentraland and Roblox – that many people use, even those not deeply entangled in the Web3 world, automatically link it to metaverses. Many major brands and celebrities – including Gucci, Paris Hilton, and Snoop Dogg – have either purchased real estate or hosted events on the platform.

VR can let your avatar live forever

Somnium Space, a virtual reality (VR) world that is already fully accessible via Oculus Quest headphones, is developing a feature for its platform called “Live Forever,” which aims to realize a vision that has occupied the minds of sci-fi dreamers for generations: creating compelling virtual representations of real humans. They can live forever in a virtual world, where we as humans can stop and say hi. For all of you who are turning uncomfortably in their seat and contemplating some of the darker episodes of Black Mirror, don’t worry – Somnium Space brains don’t seem to be making any plans to download and redownload human consciousness on PC. We are far from that. Instead, the company aims to use artificial intelligence (AI) to mimic virtual avatars that have been carefully designed to look and act like real people. The idea to launch “Live Forever” mode came from Somnium Space founder and CEO Artur Sychov after his father was diagnosed with muscle cancer, according to Vice. “In those moments, he began to wonder if there was a way his children could have a conversation with their grandfather, even after he was gone,” Vice reports. The key to creating timeless digital representations of ourselves and our loved ones? Large amounts of data. Not only is the typical kind of psychometric data we all present every time we like an Instagram post, but more sensitive bio-data — more personal, like heart activity and body movement — aggregated by new technologies that already exist. . works. After collecting all this data, which will obviously only be collected from users who have chosen to pay for the “Live Forever” mode, the company plans to let the AI ​​do its job by taking over the virtual avatar, and interacting with us. , then gradually changes to become more and more sophisticated, more and more human. (What could go wrong??)

Fidelity Investments hopes to attract young consumers by activating the new Decentraland

Financial management firm Fidelity Investments has opened a virtual property in the metaverse, aiming to attract young consumers by offering a course on financial education. As well as a virtual dance floor. The “Fidelity Stack” – as the Decentraland property is known – is a virtual eight-story building that, in addition to the dance floor, will include a “roof garden”. The building looks less like your typical office building and more like a Gaudí masterpiece, or perhaps a Dali painting. or service and presenting themselves as tech-savvy. It is possible that the company paid attention to the huge popularity of dance content on TikTok when it decided to create a virtual dance floor. There will also be an element of fun, as is often the case in the metaverse (which was largely born from video games) – according to the company, visitors to the Fidelity Stack will be challenged to collect “orbs” as they move around the building and learn some basics of ETF investing ( ETFs). “Fidelity is constantly innovating as we reimagine what it will look like to engage with customers as a trusted financial services company in the future,” said Catherine Condon, Head of Marketing Channels and Emerging Platforms at Fidelity, in a statement. “As Web 3.0 takes shape, Fidelity is excited to bring its financial education expertise to this new virtual space.”

Men’s health charity Movember unveils ‘non-replaceable testicles’.

Movember, which describes itself as “the leading charitable organization changing the face of men’s health,” has announced a new series of NFTs called “Uninfectable Testicles,” which aims to raise awareness of the risk of testicular cancer by gently reminding holders of tokens. themselves regularly. Designed in collaboration with Mishka NYC (an art group) and MRM Agency, the NFT series will feature simple artworks – just two anthropomorphic cartoon fields – that will gradually evolve and change as they move. Note that the brand hopes to remind token holders to check themselves for any unusual changes as well. The less you examine the NFT, the more individual characteristics you will lose. “Uninfectable testicles are a fun way to remind people of a very simple procedure to avoid or determine the possibility of testicular cancer,” Harsh Kapadia, creative director at MRM New York, said in a statement. “Gamification technology also reminds us that the more times you check in, the healthier your non-replaceable testicles while making a couple more valuable.” Proceeds from the NFT campaign — which will drop on April 26 — will go to the TIGER trial, “a very large, multinational clinical trial investigating which of the two current and commonly used treatments is most effective in preventing death in men with relapsed testicular cancer,” according to Movember’s website. .

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