If the Metaverse is to follow Web 2.0, how should it be governed?
As we all know, people’s life has combined with web 2.0 a lot. It gives us to have the opportunity to enjoy a more convenient life. Since the internet has developed a lot, some new ideas like Metaverse have appeared. Though the concept of Metaverse is designed to be followed the rule of Web 3.0, we can still find hypothetical the world that will be like when Metaverse follows the tradition of Web2.0. There are similarities between Web2.0 and Metaverse through their basic idea. When Metaverse starts to follow the rule of Web 2.0, a new question exists: How can we govern the web that combines Metaverse and Web 2.0?
Let’s begin with the definition of Web 2.0 and Metaverse
— What is Web 2.0?
The most essential part of Web 2.0 is that users post information on Web 2.0. The idea of we 2.0 is that it focuses on the concept of the participation of the users. Web 2.0 gives users the space for them to manage themselves on the internet. Web 2.0 and users are in an intergrowth relationship. (O’Reilly, 2009.)
The image is form the book ‘ What is Web 2.0’
The image explains the idea of Web 2.0 by using the form of mindmap. In this way, it is easy to find out that the important part of the Web 2.0 is user.
— What is Metaverse?
The Metaverse is a concept that provides an opportunity to create an interconnected web of social, networked immersive environments in multiple platforms. Metaverse offers a place where users can do everything in it except sleep and eat. It enables users from different countries can communicate with each other at the same time. Metaverse can be understood as a transit station for users to have a place where they can ignore the place and time to connect. (Mystakidis, 2022)
This image is from the article ‘Mateverse’
Since we are now considering the combinition of Web2.0 and Metaverse, the part of virtual reality can be ignored since Web 2.0 can not reach that part.
— Similarity for Metaverse and Web 2.0
To conclude, the idea of Metaverse and Web 2.0 together is that they are both based on the users. Web 2.0 is the platform where users can edit their thoughts on it, while Metaverse also provides a place for people to have an opportunity to edit freely on that world.
After explaining the basic concept of We 2.0 and Metaverse, it is time to think about the next question– When Metaverse follows Web 2.0, how should it be governed?
Games are the best examples here to show the opportunity that Metaverse follows the rule of Web 2.0. For the games here, the game that uses VR and AR technology does not count. The game ‘second life’ can be an example to show the world that Metaverse followed Web 2.0. For example, the game ‘second life’ can be the typical game representing Metaverse in pursuing Web 2.0. Users can experience a new life in the game, where they can make friends, shop, study, etc., on this game. Basically, users can do everything except sleep and eat in this game. For the positive part of the Metaverse game, like ‘second life,’ people can make new friends in the game and may have the opportunity to heal the psychological wound that was hurt in real life.
However, there are also negative parts that exist. Unlike reality, specific rules provide for people to avoid the world being damaged. Large amounts made these rules people, and the public had the opportunity to vote for their regulations. However, in the game, the producer makes the game’s rules. Users do not have the chance to vote in changing the game’s rules. Then the question left to the society is how can the life in the game like ‘second life’ be governed.
First of all, we should give users a chance to set the rules in the game together. The platform like second life do offered users an opportunity to gain positive emotion but also there’s an opportunity for those bad people to spread violent, bloody things on it. (Gillespie, 2018) In order to prevent those things being spread through the platform, rules must be set. These basic standard lines should be made by the publisher as an ethic line. The other rules like the rules being used in each social society group can be made by users themselves. Since users already realize things that can not be done in the game. Other rules in each society group that is made by users themselves can be more detail. In this way, every rules can fit the demands well.
Secondly, we should disperse the power. Instead of letting only a small group of people like the publisher to have the right in changing the game society, we should give users the chance to have the power in changing the game. It’s not like giving users all of the power to change the game but to give them the same amount of the right as the publishers have. In this way, the publisher can not do things to harm users. For example, the series named ‘Sword art online’.
The series describe the world that VR technology is a common technology for every one in the world to use it. When users start a game that needs to use VR to play which of course is a game that fit the profile of Metaverse can not exit. Since the publisher wants to controlled the people who played this game and finally to control the world. Though the game we are talking about here is not the game that fit the profile of Web3.0, we do not have to worried about the problem that we can not exit the game. However, it is still necessary for us to consider the problem of giving too much power to the publisher. That why it is better for the public to have the same amount of power as the producer has in order to keep the balance of the society.
Finally, to conclude the key concept of the way that the Metaverse in Web 2.0 to be governed is that to focus on the relationship between users and platforms. There are ethic line we must follow which should be made by the producers or the government. However, it is also necessary to leave some space for users to manage the rules themselves. In this way, we can avoid the problem for giving the publishers too much power but also the rules can fit the society online much better. As the similarity for Metaserve and Web 2.0, users are the most important part of their key ideas. That’s why when we try to govern the Metaverse which follow Web 2.0, we should let users become the elements that matters the most.
Mystakidis, S. (2022). Metaverse. Encyclopedia, 2(1), 486-497. https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia2010031
O’Reilly, T. (2009). What is Web 2.0. O’Reilly Media.
Bibri, S. (2022). The Social Shaping of the Metaverse as an Alternative to the Imaginaries of Data-Driven Smart Cities: A Study in Science, Technology, and Society. Smart Cities, 5(3), 832-874. https://doi.org/10.3390/smartcities5030043
Burgess, J., Marwick, A., & Poell, T. The SAGE handbook of social media (pp. 254-261).
Second life. M.facebook.com. (2022). Retrieved 16 October 2022, from https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=pfbid012fsvsJuuJMgpPFBxLBdhatghUHkYqLfrkFRNX6aB1ub4jEKBb3NxWtCA7HGpRWLl&id=100047304966691.