At the moment, as I understand, the metaverse it's just a bunch of avatars, like avatars on games. In fact, the metaverse as I understand it right now just looks like a cheap game.
Some are starting to take it seriously. A Minister from a Middle Eastern government the other day called for the United Nations to be involved in the metaverse to oversee crime. It's a fair question. If crime is committed in the metaverse, which it will be, under whose jurisdiction is it policed? Who is charged? And where and what are the penalties?
Money is already being used in the metaverse, so does a financial crime get caught up by a police force somewhere?
The same way I called cryptocurrency as a Ponzi scheme. The same way I called the Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) frenzy as flash laybuy that simply offered another version of debt and would end badly.
If you haven't followed the BNPL market, it's about to collapse. Those companies that listed have been spanked. How they could never see that getting people further into debt wasn’t going to be a road to riches still fascinates me.
But that was crypto. No regulation, no limits on the number of currencies, a link to crime and third world countries. Gosh, what a surprise when it all blows up. It won't stop the nutters though, they still buy in. There will still be another avenue invented to get you caught up in easy debt. As long as there is opportunity to delude the gullible, there is an industry to be had.
The metaverse, by the way, is offering clothing for your avatar. Pretend clothing for a pretend person. But the money you give them is real and from this world.
Next, you'll buy a virtual house, a virtual car, and virtual furniture. And I'm assuming virtual mental health care to try and explain how you got yourself wrapped up in this mad rabbit hole. All the while, Mark Zuckerberg, the bloke who has already contributed so magnificently to the betterment of the human race here on Earth, pockets it all because you are a sucker.
Ah, a fool and their money. In a world on the verge of a recession, isn't it a rich irony that the booming business isn't even real?
Mike Hosking is a New Zealand television and radio broadcaster. He currently hosts The Mike Hosking Breakfast show on NewstalkZB on weekday mornings