What does the Oculus Rift backlash tell us? Facebook just isn’t cool

The news that Facebook has splurged $2bn (£1.2bn) on buying Oculus Rift, the world’s first really viable virtual reality headset, has set off waves of plaintive snark in the world of videogames. Virtual reality headsets were supposed to be about totally immersive space battles or sword fighting simulations, not about peer-through simulacra of distant relatives’ new kitchen windows. I mean, it’s bad enough when Facebook friends have children and instantly change their profile picture to a baby photo, as though having regressed to mewling and puking infancy themselves. Imagine seeing that appalling phenomenon in the future Faceworld. Facebook will probably not have reassured many observers with the despair-inducing management jargon of its announcement, wherein we learn excitedly that “Facebook plans to extend Oculus’ existing advantage in gaming to new verticals including communications, media and entertainment, education and other areas.” Pretty sure one of those other “verticals” is going to be advertising that is literally in your face.

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read more via theguardian.com