Ready Player One? Facebook to Hire Thousands of Europeans to Help Create a Metaverse
10:40 GMT 18.10.2021 (Updated: 18:23 GMT 03.11.2022)
Facebook plans to dip its social media tentacles into the European pool of talent and consumer potential.
The platform has announced
a decision to create 10,000 new high-skilled jobs within the European Union (EU) over the next five years, with the aim of building a metaverse.
A metaverse is an online world that users can access via technologies like virtual and augmented reality.
"At its heart is the idea that by creating a greater sense of 'virtual presence', interacting online can become much closer to the experience of interacting in person", Facebook said.
For some, the metaverse may resemble the plot of a science fiction film, like that of "Ready Player One", where users interact and build relationships inside a virtual reality bubble.
Facebook has vowed that no one company will own and operate the metaverse, with it being open and interoperable.
The giant's VP of Global Affairs, Nick Clegg, and the VP of Central Products, and Javier Olivan have discussed the company's new employment plans in Europe, calling it "a vote of confidence in the strength of the European tech industry and the potential of European tech talent".
"The EU has a number of advantages that make it a great place for tech companies to invest — a large consumer market, first class universities and, crucially, top-quality talent. European companies are at the cutting edge of several fields, whether it's the German biotech helping to develop the first-ever MRNA vaccine or the coalition of European neo-banks leading the future of finance. Spain is seeing record levels of investment into startups solving everything from online grocery delivery to neuroelectronics, while Sweden is on its way to becoming the world's first cashless society by 2023", they said.
Clegg, who served as deputy PM in the UK's coalition government from 2010 to 2015, praised European policymakers for upholding such values as free expression, privacy, transparency, and the rights of individuals in the day-to-day workings of the internet.
"Facebook shares these values and we have taken considerable action over the years to uphold them. We hope to see the completion of the Digital Single Market to support Europe's existing advantages, as well as stability on international data flows, which are essential to a flourishing digital economy", Facebook said.
It's said that it will take 10 to 15 years to realise the metaverse idea.