Camp Italia partecipa al VWMOOC2022 con una sessione sul tema “Virtual Tourism and Metaverse”.
Appuntamento Giovedì 29 Settembre 2022 alle ore 22:00 ora italiana, 1:00pm SLT.
Camp Italia participates in VWMOOC2022 with a session on the theme “Virtual Tourism and Metaverse”.
Thursday 29 September 2022 at 22:00 Italian time, 1:00 pm SLT.
*Dr. Doris Molero, aka Pionia Destiny, Photo Courtesy
VWMOOC2022 session on "Virtual Tourism and Metaverse" Camp Italia September 28th, 1:00 pm SLT
Hello everyone and welcome to this meeting on “Virtual Tourism and Metaverse” within VWMOOC22, Virtual Worlds Massive Open Online Courses, in Second Life.
I want to start by thanking Pionia Destiny, Dr. Doris Molero, for inviting me to participate in this new edition of the Virtual Worlds MOOC which is also held in Second Life: it is always a pleasure to be able to share experiences, insights and projects with you all.
On 27 September, two days ago, World Tourism Day was celebrated all over the world. Today we ask here, after two days, to try to trace a path where in the future we will be able to make tourism walk in virtual worlds.
In this meeting I wish to talk about tourism in virtual worlds and how virtual worlds can become a place of travel experiences and exchange between non-virtual reality and what we like to call metaverse.
The meeting will take place both in voice and in local chat to allow everyone a better usability.
And any questions at the end of my report I ask you to write them in local chat, please!
We all know of the scenic use of the Second Life platform where new lands, new sites, new regions are built every day, based on landscapes of great impact and intense beauty.
We all know many of these lands, these sites, these regions, not only with the Destination Guide, but also through the tireless work of users who, traveling around, immortalize the beauty of these landscapes and publish their photos on other platforms such as Flickr, for example, where a large number of photographers of virtual worlds make known their travels and glimpses of these regions.
Someone coined the term “Synthetic Tourism”, or Synthtravel, which is the topic of this session of VWMOOC2022.
In this session of VWMOOC2022 we will go to see how “synthetic” this tourism is, or not.
But let’s start by saying something about the Metaverse.
For a few months, or since, Mr. Zuckerberg pulled the term Metaverse out of his top hat, it seems that nothing has been done but talk about it in rivers of words that are very reminiscent of the flows of gold diggers in search of their Eldorado.
But what exactly is the Metaverse? What does it represent or what could it be? Since tonight we are trying to talk about virtual and metaverse tourism, let’s also try to understand what we are talking about.
Metaverse, a term born in the cyberpunk world in 1992 and now coming to the fore because it is used by Facebook, is the evolution of the Internet, but it does not replace it. It is a difficult concept to define exactly, which foreshadows a set of interconnected virtual and real worlds, populated by avatars.
“Metaverse” is a term coined by Neal Stephenson in the book belonging to the cyberpunk culture “Snow Crash” (1992), described by the author as a sort of virtual reality shared via the internet, where one is represented in three dimensions through one’s avatar.
But there are many questions still open and since we avatars do not like to talk only about abstract concepts, we also see some data.
And below I will quote you some news combined with data:
- After the launch of Meta, Microsoft announced that from 2022 it will integrate the Metaverse into the Teams platform with a feature called Mash, and also the Metaverse Standards Forum, a place where the main organizations active in this field will collaborate “to promote the pragmatic and timely standardization that will be essential for an open and inclusive Metaverse ”in which the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) also participates.
- Some of the data cited in the Digital4 magazine on what is happening today can be summarized in percentages depending on the question asked. That is to say:
What do brands do in the Metaverse?
- 25% have a virtual selling objective (NFT, products), most of which have a stable presence on the platforms;
- 33% use the Metaverse to promote their brand and expand the customer base, most of which have a stable presence on the platforms;
- 37% launch new products through the Metaverso channel, most of them through campaigns and commercials;
- 5% promote articles already on the market;
- 21% have developed their own solutions, without leveraging existing platforms.
Therefore the Metaverse is the ideal place to live experiences with a strong emotional impact, but also educational. From Team Building to medical, from sailing schools to university classrooms, the virtual allows you to have memorable experiences like, and sometimes more than the real one.
McKinsey has conducted interviews with over 3,400 people between consumers and business executives in his recent study “Value creation on metaverse”. According to the global consulting firm, by 2030 the Metaverse will reach 5 trillion dollars, promising itself as the biggest new growth opportunity for several sectors.
Of course, at this stage, virtual reality does not replace the World Wide Web but certainly the interoperability between worlds and platforms is one of the most important bets of the Metaverse, indeed we can say that it is the bet that, if won, will allow the adoption of the Metaverse paradigm, just as that of the web has been adopted.
And after the data, let’s go back to our Virtual Tourism.
As I told you at the beginning of our chat, someone coined the term “Synthetic tourism”, or Synthtravel.
I don’t know about you all, but personally I don’t like the term Synthetic: I mean that if my avatar does journey and tourism and my avatar is me, then I don’t think there is anything synthetic LOL
Are you all synthetic? I don’t think so, on the contrary you seem quite real and alive :-))
And this is because we all strongly believe that virtually traveling is not “pretending to travel”, but rather it is one more tool for building an opinion and experimenting with an offer.
But also much more.
One more that we are discovering as we face the challenges of this example of a metaverse that is Second Life.
So, although it is clear that at the moment the Metaverse has not yet been built, we can certainly say that Second Life is a platform where a piece of Metaverse is being built and that we are all PIONEERS.
The recent pandemic experience that has hit the planet has seen us forced to a sort of acceleration and intensification in the use of virtual platforms: schools have moved to Zoom, NFT sites have skyrocketed, the term blockchain has entered in everyday life and we have, here in Second Life, witnessed that powerful phenomenon that are the returning avatars.
Virtual museums have replaced our Sunday visits, virtual hotels have hosted our alternative holidays, and today we have all been able to experience that if Real Life is certainly primary, we can certainly say that it is not so bad here: -)
What you see on the wall to my left are real images of a region of Italy which is Abruzzo where real tourism is being relaunched but also made up of collaborations with the so-called virtual world and which affects many areas of the Gran Sasso, the the most beautiful and largest Italian mountain range together with the Alps, where new and alternative routes have been created for those who love the mountains, mountaineering, and the exploration of the hidden corners of our wonderful planet Earth.
When in 2015 Explora Nunaat International, the Italian association of explorers, mountaineers and scientific researchers, carried out an important humanitarian and scientific research mission in Nepal, on the border of the Himalayas, the company producing very famous video games, Ubisoft, joined this mission the launch of FarCry and the mission itself was called “On the Trail of the Yeti”.
But we were in 2015, while today at the end of this 2022, new frontiers are already in sight.
ExploraLimits also collaborates with Camp Italia for tourist information that can combine virtual worlds with the so-called real and has participated in some Expo with images and documentaries on the Second Life platform.
And so Second Life returns to be the platform par excellence where to develop the world and expand it to new possibilities.
Here we can support educational institutions and the teaching staff in initiatives and programs of environmental education; here we can build scenic sets for the cinema; here we can create not an alternative to real life, but a place where relationships between people can be facilitated by eliminating distance, architectural barriers, problems related to the usability of sites, and much more.
Is there a precise formula? No, or at least not yet! We will discover it over time and with experience, the brands and companies concerned will discover it and, in the very near future, it will become normal to use 3D as an exchange interface instead of the flat Web.
We in Camp Italia wanted to open up to virtual tourism with an educational and non-profit project where visitors and tourists can enjoy free spaces to sleep, visit art exhibitions, have lunch at a restaurant, go to a pizzeria, relax on the beach, or do a dip in the pool.
Therefore, learn how to use the Second Life platform also to expand your boundaries!
The Casale Toscano is one free hotel we built here.
Furthermore, the flagship of the Camp Italia region, the Japanese cultural area that can physically accommodate tourists in a period ryokan, and where the cultural relations between the two peoples – the Italian and the Japanese – are marked by a great respect for the respective cultures and historical notes with news, art exhibitions, a CasaMuseo from the EDO period, a sushi bar, in a breathtaking architecture created by the best builders of the Linden Lab metaverse.
These days Camp Italia hosts a photographic exhibition on the pioneering women of cinema that you can visit in the suggestive location of the terrace overlooking the sea where the “Celebrating Venice 2022” event is taking place.
Well, and with the latest data I’m going to close …
A recent report by Regus, an organization that analyzes changes in workspaces around the world, within the document “The metaverse: the future of work?” interviewed 2,258 employees and corporate executives to assess their perspectives on the new technology trend.
Two thirds of the sample believe that the metaverse will become a real interaction platform for the professions, with the same slice that is convinced that they can work on the “new” internet within the next few years. The Regus report, which focuses on UK employees and businesses, found that more than 50% of employees and business leaders believe hybrid workspaces are facilitating the transition to the metaverse, serving as a bridge between a traditional way of working, done of physical places and paper, in favor of smart working and digitization.
In this report, more than half of respondents cite the mental health of hybrid and remote workers, who should experience less stress and more opportunities for recreation on the metaverse.
And now, since we are talking about entertainment, I would say that the time has really come not to get bored with my words and to thank all of you for your presence.
I hope not to have abused your time and now, if there are any, it’s time for questions in local chat and free reflections 🙂
Thanks again and see you soon!