A tweet posted by Alexandre Bombard, CEO of Carrefour, has drawn a lot of criticism. It offers “Metaverse First Job Interviews”, which amuses or upsets many people. But Carrefour’s video, which is clearly a publicity stunt, is far from representing the future: it’s not really about virtual reality. And the brand voluntarily manipulates ambiguity.
Wednesday May 18 The idea came to Alexandre Bombard, President of Carrefour Post a 52 second video presentation “Metaverse job interview”accompanied by the message Carrefour innovates, learns, surprises! Unsurprisingly, it only took a few minutes for the Twittersphere to drift away, denouncing the horror of graphics, the futility of such a device and the absurdity of such an experience.
Alexandre Bombard did not respond to the uproar, but his video has already been viewed more than a million times. In other words, we can say that the propaganda was successful.
Within the Nomirama editorial staff, we wondered how to approach this topic. Should we go in this direction and make fun of Carrefour? Try to understand his approach and welcome innovation? By making a few phone calls, we privately realized that what had been dismissed for several hours…wasn’t really what everyone thought.
This is not a virtual reality
In the video published by Alexandre Bombard, we are shown a conference on the sea with a speaker without an arm, behind a desk and about fifty candidates in front of it. Nothing is moving. The graphics are really poor quality and don’t give the impression of any real advantages over Zoom or Google Meet.
About what is it really? First, the Carrefour “metaverse” experience did not happen in virtual reality. It was the French company VR-Académie that proposed this device to Carrefour (it had already organized a press conference for Orange, in which we participated). VR-Académie tells us that the Frame site has been selected. This is a service that only works from a browser (although it can be played in a VR headset via the site). VR-Académie created a virtual Carrefour room and showed the 50 participants how to connect to it, from their browser. This explains their inertia. For most of them, it was just a video interview.
Can we then talk about metaverses? The answer is yes. Contrary to what some might think, the metaverse is not necessarily in virtual reality. Even if this model has nothing to do with the formula that Facebook sells, which promises an open world like Ready Player One, it has the advantage of a list. The graphics are bad, as any browser should be able to make it work.
Confusion deliberately maintained?
Of course, we can now wonder what Carrefour’s interest is in testing this technology. Some welcome her willingness to test new things, and it would be hard for us to fault her. However, showing a little critical thinking is not necessary.
It is above all a question for Carrefour about having a way to get people to talk about it, as our article elsewhere attests. The company would like to associate its name with the term “metaverse” and, indirectly, get people to believe in interviews in virtual reality. We remind you once again: this is not the case. For the candidates, the interview was … almost normal.
In January 2022, Carrefour announced that it was purchasing a plot of land in the Sandbox metaverse which, for once, fancied itself a little more to become the virtual world of the future. In his tweet, Alexandre Bombard may have intentionally wanted to imply that it was the famous plot. It’s actually a simple Frame Room, organized by Académie-VR.
In conclusion, Carrefour plays a hybrid version between Sims And animal crossingwhile pretending to actually exist One ready player. Really not enough to whip a cat.