Mark Zuckerberg’s decision to rename his company has sparked interest in the metaverse.
But, exactly, what is the metaverse meaning? Is it a reality that you can grasp right now, or is it just an idea that will revolutionize how you utilize digital technology? What’s more, how will the metaverse impact our mental health?
Mark Zuckerberg, the president of Facebook, has stated that the company’s corporate name (which includes Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp) will be changed to Meta. The new brand is synonymous with the concept that Zuckerberg and other technology entrepreneurs are pursuing. This is the realm of the metaverse.
The basic idea comes from Neal Stephenson’s novel Snow Crash, published in 1992. In addition, the concept has been depicted in modern films such as Ready Player One. The people in this film live parallel lives in the actual world and the virtual world of a vast technology corporation.
Once you understand what the metaverse entails, the notion is relatively simple to grasp. However, it is currently little more than a collection of ideas and references. This will be a parallel universe where you can engage with various people as if they were in the actual world.
Indeed, you’ve probably come across the concept of virtual reality, right?. Where you have to interact with others through an avatar and various virtual reality gadgets in many kinds of science fiction work.
The metaverse poses several mental health issues for its potential users. In reality, psychology has been undertaking research in this area for quite some time. They indicate both drawbacks and advantages to using and enjoying virtual and augmented worlds.
While the metaverse is exciting, we should be cautious because it has the potential to lead to decreased physical activity and isolation. Experts in technology and mental health have differing perspectives on how the metaverse can affect mental health and well-being.
The University of Oxford carried out one such study. It discusses the potential benefits of virtual reality for patients with schizotypal characteristics. These are persons who exhibit symptoms and behaviors that are linked to schizophrenia.
According to the study, immersion in virtual reality can be beneficial in controlled circumstances. This is mainly for the treatment of specific phobias and diseases.
People with schizotypal tendencies are more inclined to use digital technologies than others.
Immersing themselves in virtual realms such as the metaverse, it appears, allows them to escape the real world. The source of all difficulties for persons suffering from anxiety, depression, psychosis, and other major mental illnesses.
People will shift their perception of Facebook from a social media corporation to a metaverse one in the next few years. According to the business, ‘The metaverse is the highest expression of social technology. On the other hand, it’s a technology that will push us to recognize the mental health concerns it brings.