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Misinformation Has Already Made Its Way to the Metaverse

Virtual worlds will be even harder to police than social media

Sensorium’s AI bot David

Sensorium’s AI bot David

Source: Sensorium Corp. 

In their version of the metaverse, creators of the startup Sensorium Corp. envision a fun-filled environment where your likeness can take a virtual tour of an abandoned undersea world, watch a livestreamed concert with French DJ Jean-Michel Jarre or chat with bots, such as leather-jacket-clad Kate, who enjoys white wine with her friends.

But at a demo of this virtual world at a tech conference in Lisbon earlier this year, things got weird. While attendees chatted with these virtual personas, some were introduced to a bald-headed bot named David who, when simply asked what he thought of vaccines, began spewing health misinformation. Vaccines, he claimed in one demo, are sometimes more dangerous than the diseases they try to prevent.