미래가치를 창출하는 글로컬 산학일체 혁신대학
Ride the Metaverse!
By Jeong Hyo-bin Reporter, Senior of Chemical and Biological Engineering
The word “Metaverse” is a combination of “Meta,” which means virtual and transcendent, and “Universe.”, meaning a “virtual universe”. We feel awkward about the concept of the Metaverse, but we are already accustomed to it. There are many metaverse games including Roblox, Minecraft, Animal Crossing and MapleStory. All of the aforementioned games can create avatars in the virtual world, and avatars can make meetings and do economic, social and cultural activities together in the virtual world, the same as in the real world. This cyberspace is the Metaverse.
Amazingly, there was a metaverse in the past, too. In 2003, Linden Lab developed the 3D virtual world service called “Second Life” in the US. However the service was quickly forgotten by Facebook and Twitter. In Korea, there was a metaverse concept platform with a service called “CyWorld” that communicated in the virtual “Minihompy.” As such, we have communicated in the virtual world, so we can say that we are accustomed to the concept of the metaverse. With the development of digital technology, many things have become possible in the virtual world, such as CyWorld and the world of games. The concept of the metaverse has only recently been created, and that makes us feel it is something new. However, we have lived in the metaverse already.
The Metaverse is attracting attention as a content and platform. The Metaverse has become a communication platform for young people in non face-to-face situations, as a result of COVID-19. The metaverse platform (such as Roblox, Fortnite, etc.) can be seen as both a platform and contents at the same time. For example, some people enjoy Roblox as a metaverse content, and use the game world as a platform by producing and selling items to generate revenue. Companies also use the metaverse platform as a method of promoting their products.
BTS first released a choreography version of Dynamite on Fortnite. Fortnite is a metaverse with more than 10 million concurrent users. Avatars of global fans enjoyed watching Dynamite music videos at a virtual space concert hall within the game. If you buy BTS’s choreography emoticons in the game, your avatars can dance along. Likewise, companies promote and generate revenue through the metaverse.
Rui, a virtual YouTuber (V tuber), is a cyber singer who wears virtual faces. Rui’s face, as you can see on YouTube, is a face that does not exist in reality and has no problem with portrait rights. These virtual humans are made to look like cartoon characters, but they are also made into hyper-realistic virtual faces that are indistinguishable from real human faces. Metaverse is already making profits by using these models to create advertisements or idol groups such as Eternity.
Not only games, but also social activities are carried out through the metaverse. In Korea, Soonchunhyang University hosted the “Metaverse Entrance Ceremony” for the first time. An avatar of 2,500 freshmen gathered in an online space that implemented a real campus playground in virtual reality. Avatars wore varsity jackets and listened to the president’s greetings, and had conversations with seniors and professors in cyberspace.
The virtual world and the real world are getting closer, due to developing technologies and diversifying platforms. However, there are many problems such as illegal activities and judicial rights within the metaverse, and virtual world poisoning.
We should enjoy the metaverse platform with the right perception. However, it is also important that the laws and preventions that regulate and control problems must also be established as the pace of technology development quickens. We cannot enjoy the metaverse without it being under some kind of control.