But some of the less rosy data hit the mailboxes this week: the number of job listings with the word “metaverse” in the title has decreased more than 80 percent from April to June, according to a report by Revelio Labs and Bloomberg, the victim of an awkwardly calculated coincidence of a general market downturn and Big Tech’s ambitious efforts to create this new virtual landscape.
During Meta’s earnings call last week, in which the company announced its first earnings cut, Mark Zuckerberg put on a happy face at his company’s big investment (and big reversal), stating that despite market conditions, the metaverse in the long run will bring profit to the company. “hundreds of billions of dollars, if not trillions”, yet reportedly preparation for layoffs myself.
However, as everyone else in the industry likes to point out, the Meta is not a metaverse. So outside 1 hack waywhat does the economy of the metaverse look like now, and how should we expect it to shape as it grows?
on the upper levels, one can think of the metaverse as a job-creation mechanism for the highly paid developers, up-and-coming Web3 consultants, and hardware designers who create the world and its technical and administrative parameters. In his overview of vacancies in the metaverse, Revelio Labs found that global IT and consulting company Accenture listed the most VR-related jobs by a wide margin—more than twice as many as Meta, which placed second. Non-tech companies have also been on the hype train: Unilever, the old-school consumer goods giant, has already formed “own Web3 teamto build their metaverse strategy in marketing everything from deodorant to ice cream bars.
But there is another landscape of the metaverse beyond the corporate walls. The kind of informal money economy that exists in gaming spaces like Roblox and Fortnite, famous and historical at the moment, as is the mega-bloated market for NFT-based metaverse real estate. There are money-making schemes that promise games like Axie Infinity, which inspired the economic micro-revolution in Southeast Asia. clearly mixed results. And if Bloomberg notedThe Metaverse has inspired similar low-paying informal jobs in the real world: Metaverse gig listings have more than quadrupled on the freelancing marketplace app Fiverr.
The economy of the metaverse ends up looking like the one that already exists: an upper class of highly trained and certified consultants and developers, and a lower class of fixed gig economy.
Is it possible that with all the hype around this, the metaverse will simply reflect our existing economic hierarchy? After all, the Internet itself has changed the global job market, prioritizing communication skills and STEM at the expense of almost everything else. What can the metaverse, with its endless virtual landscapes and new forms of digital communication, do to change what work is valued and what is not?
I posed this question to Jonathan Raz Friedman.founder and CEO of metaverse gaming company Supersocial and co-host of Bloomberg’s “Into the Metaverse” podcast, and said that while traditional engineering and development skills are in greatest demand right now as the metaverse is being built, truly robust existing ones will inspire and demand a booming economy creative workers.
“We are talking about a lot of content that will be created,” Raz Friedman said. “We’re going to see an explosion of creators coming from art and design, and just like people are doing now in games like Roblox, learning how to make items for that economy.”
He pointed out that the demand for creative skills will not be limited to designing the objects and artwork that populate these virtual worlds, but the worlds themselves, which will require completely new ways of looking at the online user experience that we now take for granted.
And if the 3D world is populated with items and experiences that people potentially value just as much as they do in the real world, isn’t it worth paying good money to keep them or get them through?
“What does it mean if my avatar wants to go to school or learn how to do something in the metaverse to become a freelancer?” Raz Friedman asked. “We are building a parallel universe of reality; it wouldn’t be so crazy to think that there could be an entire economy and workforce based on an avatar.”
In today’s Morning Money newsletter, Sam Sutton of POLITICO, Kate Davidson and Aubrey Eliza Weaver accident new law proposed by Sens. Debbie Stabenow (D-Michigan) and John Boozeman (D-Arkansas), who put cryptocurrency regulation in the shadows of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
This is the latest salvo in the battle over whether crypto should be classified as a commodity or a security. SEC Chairman Gary Gensler pushed hard to make cryptocurrencies his agency’s purview, and it explicitly classified several currencies as securities. as part recent criminal investigation. If passed, this bill would tip the balance of power in favor of the CFTC, which many in the crypto industry see as a more benign regulator. (Blockchain Association Executive Director Kristin Smith called the bill put forward by the Senate Agriculture Committee “encouraging.”)
Sam, Keith, and Aubrey also note that “although the bill does not define any specific responsibilities for the SEC – this is beyond the remit of the Senate Ag”, it allows companies that register with the CFTC to also register with the SEC. They report that while the bill lacks the fanfare of an earlier, broader cryptocurrency proposal this year. legislation from Sept. Kirsten Gillibrand (DN.Y.) and Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), lobbyists and staff, have high hopes for its eventual adoption.
Nice job if you can get this: In the latest of the fast-growing VRChat, users of an endlessly customizable (at the moment) a virtual world similar to the metaverse is lining up for a limited number of jobs in virtual K-Marts.
Users are encouraged to contact one of the store’s many “departments”, from a virtual bakery to a portrait studio, although administrators warn that the virtual KMart “is not a real company and has no payroll, health benefits, etc.” for a role-playing game to preserve the shopping experience for players” who hang out in a virtual space pretending to perform tasks such as stacking shelves or arguing with carts.
The stores are the brainchild of a user who worked for a real world retail chain where her locations have now shrunk to only three as of April of this year. This brings the company into balance with its virtual counterpart, since its creator, known by the nickname “Ericirno”, created not just a virtual copy of his own store, but Super Kmart as well as Kmart Express also.
KMart Virtual Community discord channel now has nearly 3,500 users after reports of hyper-specific store details went viral. The levels of user enthusiasm shown in virtual KMarts, including fully staffed, role shifts, is somewhat staggering compared to what is going on around some, well, truly functional brands. As companies start spending big money on metaverse marketing efforts, this is a reminder of a lesson from another (fictitious) era of advertising: Nostalgia is powerful.
Stay in touch with the entire team: Ben Schrekinger ([email protected]); Derek Robertson[email protected]); Konstantin Kakaes (ur.[email protected]); and Heidi Vogt ([email protected]). Follow us on Twitter @DigitalFuture.