tl;dr: The future may take two paths: dystopian, or utopian.
In the dystopian path:
- The real world is terrible: jobs are stressful, provide low wages, and escaping reality is necessary.
- Jobs require people to leave their home country, friends, and family. With each family member requiring a job distant from each other, the only way to reunite with the family is the Internet, and the metaverse provides this social connection.
- The metaverse is the “normal” life, that stays out of reach for everybody, a fictional utopia, in contrast with the “real” life.
In the utopian path:
- Jobs allow for people to develop their full potential and are rewarding. Some people make good money in the metaverse, as content creators.
- Offices do not exist, people work from the metaverse, and stay close to their families. They hug their families, and coworkers cannot touch them.1
- The metaverse is both the “work” life for some, and an “extraordinary” life for others, experiencing fantasy worlds. The “real” life and “normal” life are the same, and are a “good” life.
One company is heavily invested in one path, while another company has significant stakes on the other. Nobody knows what the future will bring, but given the choice, I think we should strive for the utopian path. Otherwise, if not given the choice, we should fight for the utopian path.
Cross-posted from the Sigmoid newsletter