Many metaverse platforms continue to suffer from janky technology, and a lack of stellar content that drives new users to sign up.
Editor's Note: It Isn't Just Meta That's Struggling
Connor Sephton writes...
A year ago, Mark Zuckerberg made a splash when he announced Facebook was changing its name to Meta — and throwing the kitchen sink at the metaverse.
In hindsight, that might not have been the best play. Facebook's hemorrhaging users as youngsters go to TikTok. Ad revenue has been hit hard by changes to Apple's iOS. And now, it's emerged that Horizon Worlds — its flagship metaverse — is in "quality lockdown."
Meta's stock price has tanked by 60% since the start of this year too, indicating that Wall Street isn't all that confident about Zuckerberg's big bet either. The tech giant's already made a humiliating U-turn on plans to launch a digital asset… could another one be looming?
At this point, let's not forget that Meta isn't actually alone in its struggles. Data from DappRadar recently suggested that Decentraland had just 38 active users in a 24-hour period. Meanwhile, The Sandbox wasn't faring much better… and had 522.
Many metaverse platforms continue to suffer from janky technology, and a lack of stellar content that drives new users to sign up. What's more, the tech you need for a top-tier experience still costs hundreds of dollars. While Meta and others firmly believe that virtual worlds are the future, their vision could take many, many years to realize. Some platforms will undoubtedly collapse in the meantime. To make matters worse, the project that will eventually become the market leader might not have even launched yet.
PayPal has backtracked after an update to its policies declared that users could be fined $2,500 for promoting "misinformation." In an update to its Acceptable Use Policy, the payments giant had said it would reserve the right to withdraw funds from incriminating accounts directly. This spread like wildfire online — and prompted crypto advocates to argue that the company was preparing to engage in censorship. David Marcus, who used to lead PayPal before running Facebook's doomed digital payments service, also added his condemnation. A PayPal spokesperson later clarified that the Acceptable Use Policy went out in error — and "this language was never intended to be inserted."
A damning report suggests that Meta's flagship metaverse is suffering from persistent quality issues. According to The Verge, the problems overshadowing Horizon Worlds mean that "even the team building it isn't using it very much." Leaked memos suggest that the tech giant's VP of metaverse, Vishal Shah, has put the team responsible for this virtual world on "quality lockdown" for the rest of the year. This is especially embarrassing considering that the metaverse is now a crucial part of Mark Zuckerberg's strategy. According to the news outlet, Shah asked developers who aren't using Horizon Worlds: "Why is that? Why don’t we love the product we've built so much that we use it all the time? The simple truth is, if we don't love it, how can we expect our users to love it?"
An Inverse Jim Cramer ETF could be on the horizon. The CNBC host has often been criticized for his stock and crypto picks — with skeptics arguing that they've made more money doing the exact opposite. A "buy" rating from Cramer is often regarded as the kiss of death — but if the Mad Money presenter urges his viewers to dump something, it's seen as an opportunity to jump in. On Twitter, Jim Cramer's message for those behind the ETF was simple: Bring it on. He wrote: "I bought a farm with my Bitcoin winnings, all announced, and I bought a boat with Ethereum. All announced. Everything disclosed. I WANT you to bet against me. You do not do this for 42 years and lose money every year."