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A Summary of

Meet Me in the Metaverse

by
Jonathan Lai
a16z
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Metaverse: “A persistent, infinitely-scaling virtual space with its own economy and identity system.”

  • The Metaverse will likely drastically change the way we act interpersonally online by mimicking the serendipity and spontaneity of real-world interaction.
  • However, developing these new social modalities will require AI-assisted and Fully AI-created content.

The Four Stages of Content Creation:

  1. Professionally-created content
  2. User-generated content
  3. AI-assisted user-generated content
  4. Fully AI-created content

The Present:

  • We have only reached the first two of content creation in which single person and small multiplayer experiences are the norm.
  • In this format, socializing remains focused on engaging in specific activities - e.g. completing tasks in a game.

The Future:

  • The volume of professionally-created content is limited because it is expensive to produce. Thus, user-generated content offers a promising new avenue forward, but content quality is an issue.
  • Instead, using AI as a co-creator will allow for greater volumes of content, as lay people will be equipped with the tools to create quality content. With recent and continued developments to AI, building the Metaverse seems imminent.

Social Effects:

  • Socializing will shift away from task/plan specific entertainment toward spontaneous shared activities.
  • AI-powered characters will be virtually indistinguishable from actual individuals, and social interactions will more closely resemble those in the real world.
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