Given the #metaverse announcements today, I've published a timely article to share with you, from the new Stanford Journal of Online #Trust & #Safety: The Problems with #immersive #advertising : In #AR/#VR, Nobody Knows You Are an Ad.….
You've already experienced #AugmentedReality ads if you watch sports. The billboards behind the players in the stadium are different from the billboards that your family, watching from home in another state, will see. (2)
XR hardware pioneer @avibarzeev and I discuss what immersive advertising looks like, and trace its evolution through techniques used in film, sports, and gaming. My favorite is @CocaCola Cola's "Pepsi Invaders" -- like space invaders, but the enemy robots spelled out @pepsi. (3)
Ads in #virtualworlds are fundamentally different. In short, this is not product placement -- but placement in the product. People seek out these experiences, and even pay for them, and advertisers know how persuasive this is. Buy a real Gucci jacket for your digital avatar. (4)
VR/AR = New possibilities for ads. What better way to market Jurassic Park than to put you inside it? Have someone who looks remarkably like your crush recommend you buy a particular drink. Purchase shoes in AR once the device eyetracking notes you've been looking at them. (5)
This brings up several issues. One is the impact on the creator economy. There is not yet a business model, outside of ads. Today we heard about content creator marketplaces and building digital economies. Will this replicate the harms of the gig economy in a new space? (6)
Meta will move away from using a #Facebook login. But this doesn't solve #privacy and #transparency problems. How will sponsored content be identified? What information will be cabined off from targeted ads? How will data that's already been collected be applied? (7)
@boztank's emphasis on safety gives no clarity in how content moderation will work in a spatial environment. And there are no assurances that the proper investments will be made to escape the critiques of @Meta social media. Don't get me started on FTC truth in ads standards. (8)
Finally, because of the neuroscience behind how AR/VR works, and the attractiveness & persuasive quality of experiential ads, we want a separate tailored terms of service for #XR environments, based on research, not just importing the 2D standards across computing platforms. (9)
E.g., being attacked with a cartoon knife is interpreted by your brain just like being attacked with a photorealistic knife. You respond to the act of violence, because with presence in a VR world, you feel like you're really there. (10)
And PTSD studies show your brain actually fills in the gaps in poor resolution to make it feel more real. This is not how this would work in normal #SocialMedia media #content moderation. (11)
Overall, @avibarzeev and I argue for caution in the realm of XR ads -- starting right now, while the hardware and the digital ecosystem/#Metaverse is still being built. Thus ends our #Meta-commentary. (12)

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More from @brittanheller

6 Feb
What is the connection between State-sponsored disinformation and online harassment? Well, closer than you'd think. See how this works and get 3 suggestions for how to fix it in my latest article in the Colorado Journal of Law and Technology.
Many works discuss online harassment harms; few discuss harassment's influence on elections/democracy. Online harassment has created serious policy, technical, and structural vulnerabilities that are exploited by malign actors & go largely unnoticed—or unprioritized—by companies.
Online harassment became mainstream with Gamergate. The problem is still plaguing social media, with progress being made in fits and starts after publicized incidents of bullying or silencing of minority voices. However, the problem has grown past these applications to new harms.
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