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Metaverse

"Metaverse": a new concept, which refers to a virtual world to which people connect through avatars, to coexist and relate to each other; and which is intended to serve for everything, through a combination of technologies that facilitate this possibility.

José Luis Pascual-February 28, 2022-Reading time: 3 minutes
metaverse

Metaverse is the new concept that will probably be the protagonist of the evolutionary process of digital society in the current decade. It will be important to see where faith, the Church and spiritual life will be in this new reality or situation. The metaverse makes it possible to overcome the physical and temporal limitations of the real universe to enter new and infinite universes through avatars or virtual projections of people.

But it will be the metaverses of Goal (formerly Facebook), Microsoft and Google will popularize these new virtual environments. For these large companies, it is a key concept in their long-term growth strategy. It is very likely that the metaverse will follow a long, slow trajectory and, at a given moment, experience a sudden development. This is what happened with the bitcoins or with mobile telephony. Making the leap to metaverses seems much more plausible after the sudden and intense digital transformation brought about by the pandemic, which has revolutionized teleworking and the digital insertion of many people who were previously reluctant or alien to change. Shopping online or participating in video calls has reached all ages and strata of the population. Thus, the transition from web browsing or grid-screen meetings to the virtual immersive experience will be more natural and understandable.

Metaverses are all the rage. But what is meant by metaverse? Metaverse is understood as a virtual world in which we connect with avatars, to coexist and interact with each other. 

The renewed idea of metaverse goes further in the search for a multipurpose, i.e., all-purpose, through a combination of technologies. The 5G, virtual reality, augmented reality, and the blockchain with the possibility of asset tokenization and NFTs, make it possible for people in the near future to live within the metaverse: to work, navigate, play, interact, educate, etc.; to be a digital extension of their physical life, to change the screen of their mobile or tablet for an integration in the metaverse, so that the line between the physical and digital universe will blur a little more.

Metaverses are expected to reach popularity within the next five years, and several technology companies are bidding to create the most attractive one, where we will all end up. It is estimated that Goal has invested $28.5 billion through 2021, and Bloomberg estimates that the business will be worth about $800 billion by 2024.

The implications of the metaverse for legislation are enormous and span all branches of law. Let us look at some examples:

-in some metaverses it is already possible to buy plots of land and even develop real estate projects on them. Recently, the sale of a plot of land for 450,000 dollars has been in the news, as well as the payment of 2.5 million dollars for several plots in a digital street for fashion establishments. So, will it be possible to mortgage these plots, can there be leasing, subleasing, assignment, usufruct or easement?

-at Decentralanda metaverse in blockchainWhat kind of voting will be possible in the metaverse? Will the majority of the inhabitants of the metaverse be able to impose their will, or will there be some kind of external control?

-If we work in the metaverse for a DAO (decentralized autonomous organization), we will have to comply with labor regulations. What should a virtual workplace look like? Can a workplace be inspected in the metaverse?

The casuistry is enormous and encompasses all types of relationships in which humans interact. The more similar the interaction in the metaverse is to that in the real world, the greater the legal implications.

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