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A shareholder vote on whether Meta Platforms Inc.'s projected metaverse virtual environment is good for society is expected.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has rejected Meta's plea to block an Arjuna Capital LLC proposal. This proposal asked for an independent evaluation of potential psychological, legal, and human rights harms caused by the metaverse. A financial advisory firm is Arjuna Capital. Arjuna Capital had earlier in February filed similar shareholder petition with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Meta did not dispute that the metaverse had the ability to cause damage. However, it contended to the SEC that the plan might be exempted under current standards since it pertains to the company's "routine business activities." The SEC, on the other hand, decided that the plan "goes beyond routine business affairs."
For the past few years, the metaverse has been a popular issue of debate, with individuals arguing its virtues and drawbacks. There's lots of evidence to show that the metaverse might have long-term and negative consequences for humans.
In a Bloomberg piece, writer Naomi Nix correctly stated: "In virtual reality, everything unsettling and potentially destructive that happens on the internet feels so much more powerful."
"We're not saying no one should be working on a metaverse," said Natasha Lamb, managing partner at Arjuna Capital.
What we're arguing is, is Meta the ideal organisation to accomplish this when they're so badly governed and manifestly incapable of handling what they've already been given? Is it socially permissible for them to do so, or not?
It's worth remembering that Facebook's social conscience has been questioned in the past. It is still reeling from the crisis caused by whistleblower Frances Haugen's exposure of internal papers in 2021. According to the released data, Facebook prioritized profit before content regulation.
Furthermore, the US government and law enforcement authorities have been attempting to hold Facebook accountable for many years. However, no action has been done thus far.
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