News hardware Here’s how the metaverse could flip your brain
The metaverse is still not back in fashion, but it is already the subject of dystopian theories. According to an expert in artificial intelligence, the virtual 3D world can be the scene of large-scale manipulations, especially thanks to deepfakes
We are not telling you anything, the metaverse is not yet relevant, even after the integration of Meta from Facebook in several countries. But even though it is not yet a part of our daily lives, several experts have started to think about several hypotheses regarding certain twists of the metaverse.
In addition to the recreational and professional aspects attributed to it, the metaverse will surely be the site of malevolent acts like the web we know today. Thus, some have already begun to try to understand the problems surrounding this digital world long before its massive adoption. The goal is to be able to find solutions when the metaverse will be populated by a good part of the earth-based population.
In this context, several cybersecurity experts have already warned about the presence of a potential dark web on the metaverse: Darkverse.
This time it is computer scientist Rand Waltzman who warns against the misuse of deepfakes in the metaverse. Through his consulting and research institution “RAND Corporation”, the artificial intelligence expert explains that metaverses like Meta could be the perfect environment to take advantage of deepfakes.
“Virtual reality environments will allow psychological and emotional manipulation of its users on a level unimaginable in today’s media. explains the expert in a press release from the RAND Corporation.
Manipulators could impersonate a public figure using deepfake technology to conduct disinformation campaigns. If this kind of process already exists in the current web, the effect of this type of manipulation in the metaverse could be greatly accentuated.
In fact, the metaverse aims to simulate a true immersion in a parallel world using virtual reality. In this sense, many users will have the illusion of living a different digital life. According to the RAND Institute, this digital double could see its ideological integrity if it trusted certain avatars encountered in its experiments in the synthetic world.
To illustrate his remarks in other circumstances, Rand Waltzman relies on a series of experiments conducted by Stanford researchers. In particular, the study shows that by modifying a politician’s features and physical characteristics to resemble a potential voter, he is able to garner more votes from the electorate.
With these elements, the computer scientist transcribes the experience in the metaverse. It particularly highlights the ease of being able to change your avatar using a deep fake trick on the metaverse. Thus, by changing his avatar face, a candidate could garner votes by manipulating each voter’s perception.
Nevertheless, we are able to wonder if the metaverse is really the problem, as a candidate’s physique, and even more so when virtual, matters less than the ideas conveyed…
Also, although it is almost certain that the metaverse will be the subject of political and other communication campaigns in the future – the virtual world in 3D must greatly gain in realism to allow this type of manipulation. Indeed, ideological manipulation via deepfakes does not seem appropriate in an environment that conveys no illusion of immersion. For now, users remain skeptical of the visual promise of the digital world, such as recent criticism of Horizon World.