Culture Technology

The Future is Private. Not.


via Engadget

At F8 2019, Facebook declared that the future is private. They also released the Oculus Quest. The Quest is a new VR headset that runs without cables, light boxes, or a computer. It’s an all-in-one virtual reality device. The Quest let’s you walk around your house without leaving VR. Its cameras map your space and remembers it so you only have to map it once.

VR enthusiasts claim that the Quest will hail in the new era of virtual reality. Finally, the Quest will bring VR to the masses. Consumers will flock to its promise of immersing users in their favorite games. Moreover, it will allow them to virtually socialize like never before. Slip on the Quest to meet your family and friends in ways impossible before.

Yet, not everyone is jumping on the Quest bandwagon. Some people, like myself, wonder how much of our interactions using the Quest are really private from Facebook. Facebook claims that the map of your home is stored locally one your device, not in Facebook’s servers. They didn’t say what is stored on their servers.

Facebook’s mission has evolved over the years. Their business practices are shady. They are a company who wants to make the world a better place while at the same time making money off its user’s data.

People want to use the internet to explore. They can’t do that if the social media accounts they use shut them down. Facebook has a specific way they think humans should act and think. They use their algorithms and news feeds to manipulate their users and purge anyone who uses “wrong think”.

Why should we put their headset on our bodies? Why should we let their hardware map and remember our homes and personal spaces?

Facebook Libra and the quest for more data

The latest weapon in Facebook’s arsenal is it’s cryptocurrency, Libra. Facebook is working with banks and businesses to try and make their cryptocurrency work. The problem? “The benefits to business owners in a Libra-fied world would be tremendous: payment systems that work seamlessly within Facebook; digital dashboards that offer real-time customer support and insights; hundreds of millions of new customers.” That’s according to an article written by Amy Webb at Inc.

She brings up good comparisons between Facebook and China’s own “enormous gaming, social-media, and e-sports empire[s]” (Tencent and Alibaba). The Chinese government doesn’t value their citizen’s online privacy like we do in America. But Facebook isn’t the government and we know they value our privacy or data either (no matter how much they claim the future is private).

Zuckerberg laughs during the “future is private” announcement

Do you trust Facebook after Facebook’s F8 announcement that the future is private? Would you use their crpytocurrency? Let me know in the comments below!

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