In a shocking revelation, SumOfUs’s researcher has revealed that she was the victim in Meta’s VR Horizon Worlds sexual assault. The researcher details some of the most horrific moments that took place on the platform in the damning report. The report includes her avatar being raped, lewd sexual comments and homophobia, as well as other horrendous incidents.
Sexual assault claims on Horizon Worlds is not a surprise to anyone.
This isn’t the first such incident to occur on the platform. There have been many high-profile sexual assault reports about Horizon Worlds since it was launched in December.
The researcher began by putting on her Oculus virtual-reality headset and selecting a female avatar. After being invited to a private party by other users, the researcher decided to disable certain settings in her profile. The platform defaults to a safety feature of four feet. This safety feature is intended to prevent people from being too close to other people without their permission.
However, when disabled, there is nothing in place to stop others from touching you and, in this case, doing terrible things. SumOfUs also has a video that shows the events leading up to it. The video of Horizon Worlds’ sexual assault has not been shared by SumOfUs, but they have described the incident.
The report states that the researcher “was led into a private room at a party where she was raped by a user who kept telling her to turn around so he could do it from behind while users outside the window could see — all while another user in the room watched and passed around a vodka bottle.”
Significantly, it is essential to note that this happened within one hour of the researcher joining Horizon Worlds.
The Horizon Worlds safety features ‘aim’ to eliminate the possibility of sexual assault
According to a spokesperson at Meta, the personal boundary safety feature makes this kind of scenario impossible.
“In Horizon Worlds, Personal Boundary is default on at almost 4ft for non-friends to make it easier to avoid unwanted interactions. They said that they don’t recommend disabling the safety feature for people you don’t know.
However, it takes seconds to disable the feature. The problem is also evident in the fact that Horizon Worlds platform users are actively looking to sexually assault others. The root cause of the problem is more than just a security feature.
Women in Web3
Meta will need to consider making its platform more diverse and welcoming for women. Women deserve to feel safe in every space, including virtual reality. They must also have a system to stop or remove those who act in such a vile and horrible manner.
Over the last year, we have seen a massive rise in the number of women joining Web3 and also creating awesome NFT projects. This trend must continue. Users will be discouraged from joining if they hear stories like these. It is up to the Web3 community as a whole to make the Web3 space more welcoming and equitable.
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