Meta, the social network company, is getting some pushback on its plan to market and bring Horizon Worlds, its flagship metaverse app, to teens. Democratic senators Ed Markey and Richard Blumenthal directed a letter to the company to halt these actions, citing concerns about the interactions that teens could have in Meta’s virtual worlds.
Two Democratic senators have written a letter asking Meta to stop its recently reported plan of opening its metaverse world to teens. Ed Markey and Richard Blumenthal, Democrat senators from Massachusetts and Connecticut, criticize the idea of opening Horizon Worlds, Meta’s flagship metaverse app, to teens 13 years and up, citing diverse factors that might endanger them through the interactions available in this virtual world.
Markey and Blumenthal call for halting the plan to protect the health of these young users and their privacy in the metaverse, calling out the company for its previous mistakes involving this demographic.
Meta’s plan of including teens in its metaverse on Feb. 7. The company’s new strategy included opening the Horizon Worlds experience to teens aged 13 years old and up. This would constitute a change from the current policies of the app, which only allows users from 18 years old to roam the virtual world.
According to WSJ, Meta’s memo reinforces the need of pushing these services to young users in order to keep growing. Horizon Worlds VP Gabriel Aul reportedly stated
While Horizon Worlds experienced rapid growth in its initial stages, growing its user base tenfold soon after release in December 2021, the app has been criticized for its buggy state even by Meta’s own employees. In October, VP of Metaverse Vishal t.