for worse and better

By Didier Pitelet, Founding President of La Maison-Henoch Consulting

Like any revolution, what is presented as the future of the Internet, the metaverse already carries within it the human duality of good and evil.
Like the Internet, which has equipped humanity with the best with access to information, knowledge, scientific progress (…) and the worst with the hatred of social networks, Darknet, pornography without any regulation for children, the cult of violence with videos that perpetuate unhealthy propaganda etc.
The legislature is not a train, but light years behind, leaving the population and in particular the most vulnerable in the hands of what are known as gangsters in organized gangs.

Where is the spirit of light?

In just 20 years, the universalism of the web has dethroned the Enlightenment, including our republican motto of “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity” by especially seeking to sublimate egalitarianism instead of equality; the fact that everyone can express themselves freely is an excellent thing, if respect for others was the premise of the digital relationship.
The stranglehold of American multinational corporations exports a cultural model that is a real poison to the republican vision of certain democracies, starting with ours; as evidence of the explosion of all forms of communitarianism, which maintains between itself above all and the hatred of difference.
Not to mention the ecological impact of the web, which today is one of the most harmful sources against the fight against global warming.
According to an article published in Le Figaro on August 22, all digital technology accounts for 10% of global electricity and 4% of greenhouse effects, not to mention mining to extract component manufacturing materials. Specialists predict that by 2025, in three short years, we should go to 20% of global electricity consumption and 7 to 8% of greenhouse gas emissions.

The balance between its impact on society and the good life is relatively mixed: it results in a “double weight, two goals” with the incense of new idols borne by their allegiance to sex, violence, hatred of a share and slavery to a consumerist world at all, immediately and as cheaply as possible with an easy purchase and comparison that has never been known before.

From Google and Facebook, the pioneers who dreamed of themselves as a “new conscience for humanity” and a “new church”, today we have become a sanitized civilization of real time, subject to the permanent judgment of political correctness; the new wave of wokism that accelerates the process of submission, one must be wary of everything one says or writes; Desproges and Coluche must turn in their graves.

Political correctness padlocks free thought

Political correctness with a clear conscience about the excesses of the web has become the absolute weapon to lock the “free thinkers”.
For example, that of the companies, which aligns them with a pathetic wooden language and feeds most of the reasons for being, which arose in the wake of the Pacte law and the famous Senard/Notat report. They are all alike in their advocacy of a better world within everyone’s reach.

One of the consequences of this context, reinforced by the Covid crisis, is what is called “The Great Resignation”, which, starting from the United States, is now affecting the whole of Europe, especially France, whose resignations have increased. 20% in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021, i.e. 470,000 French people who left their employers (in the US, almost 48 million Americans left their jobs).

The Metaverse, the future of humanity through avatars?

This world, which today sublimates “I” into “we”, which excites the ego and individualism, is today the breeding ground for the metaverse, a new fashionable word to denote what some do not hesitate to qualify as the future of humanity.
Naming his Facebook group, Meta, Mark Zuckerberg is convinced that a better world is possible… in virtual mode.
No more worries, no more existential questions that have plagued humanity since its creation “who am I, where am I going, why?” and have fed millennia of questions.
The famous “know thyself and thou shalt know the universe and the gods” in the temple of Delphi is finally a reality, I will know myself with one click, I will live the dream life of angels with inserted avatar.

Who can believe that this virtual reality, which currently looks like a barely improved version of Second Live, is without danger to the very sense of humanity.
“I have a crap life in real life and a dream life in the metaverse.”
When we see the impact of video games on the explosion of violence among young people or even porn (read the reports of sexual assaults in kindergartens), we can easily imagine the virtual urges that will surely happen in the real world.
The first cases of virtual rape have already hit the headlines.
In a world where anything would be allowed, we can imagine that it is the best that comes out of the winner, if it is not, organized upstream, intended for the good of humanity precisely.

An incredible legal vacuum

Unfortunately, as with the Internet, the metaverse is launching itself into an incredible legal and ethical vacuum, following the “we’ll learn as we go” formula.
In 2022, every child is watching and consuming the worst of humanity on their smartphone, imagine living that in the metaverse!

As always, the world of money reeks of business opportunities; the sponsors push to preempt their universes; some even manage to sell more expensive products in the virtual world than in the real world. Art converts to NFTs…
The world of vanity is now boundless; everything is already sold, nothing exists, everything is sold. The dream world for merchants and developers has launched and, I swear, no happiness without it. To be in the game, you have to be there, otherwise the sanction falls, we are old-fashioned.

But what about this big boss, happy to show off after holding his first management committee in the metaverse, or this company which, under the guise of innovation, is launching recruiting sessions in the metaverse?
What if we opened our eyes to the denial of the human being at stake?
Recruiting without people present, leading without being at the heart of the battle, is it really fair? Finally, the old-fashioned is not necessarily where we think it is…
For 25 years, the company and its organization have suffered an incredibly severe dehumanization with its share of burnout, withdrawal and so on, the literature on the subject is not lacking.
Disembodied leadership under the pressure of short-termism and hyper-profitability has dried up the very meaning of deep and sincere human relationships.

How can one honestly imagine reclaiming one’s lost (or forgotten) humanity with a multitude of avatars?
Because young people like to play, do you have to get started?
It’s honestly taking them for gogos!
And yet, as with the “old generation” Internet, the metaverse is already full of great prospects in the various fields of education, health, industry…
Technical advances in the sensory will make it possible to practice in the virtual and to perfect the perfect gesture; the future of training will undoubtedly take place in the metaverse as well.
What about teaching?
The world of Grandes Ecoles has become a market like any other, with its share of pension funds and other shareholders, who in recent years have carried out incredible concentration moves to the point where the global mapping of companies has changed significantly.
The profit logic has very often taken precedence over the quality of the courses.
Tomorrow it is a safe bet that courses will be 100% on metaverse, including diploma.
The new people born with the Z and Alpha generations drive this fundamental movement and make it essential; all the more reason not to confuse speed with precipitation in its deployment under pressure from different and varied firms.
At some point, if we really want to create value, it is not necessary to think about the concepts of transmission, sustainability and protection of life, here called data.
With the example of the Internet, we know that humanity has given birth to the worst and the best without yet learning any real lessons; with the metaverse everything will go much faster because a whole generation is ready to live virtually.

Companies can cater to the real person

Businesses will have in their hands the opportunity to “sanctify” trustworthy human relations; if they are not helped by politics (as is too often the case), they will have to rethink all forms of life and their own utility; they will have to quickly open up to the challenges of the neurosciences, which will be on their way to becoming a full-fledged pillar of management. In the name of common sense, they are a bulwark against wokism and other cultural disturbances also carried by these virtual universes.
With optimism, it is possible to believe that the metaverse will quickly become an opportunity to prune all the superfluous that poisons the life of the teams, to rethink its cultural rituals without forgetting tomorrow, in 5/10 years the management of 100% virtual teams and all that this will entail from a legal point of view.
The internet has transformed the world, the metaverse will revolutionize it, hoping that the best will triumph over the worst.
Everyone wants their share of responsibility.

Didier Pitelet

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