Fb’s new VR chat app will function paid in-game hosts to mannequin neighborhood behaviour
Facebook Horizon Guides act more like hosts in a physical space than like moderators in a digital space
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Facecbook’s new virtual reality chat app features paid in-game hosts to help manage the community and prevent toxicity.
Facebook Horizon, the social media giant’s answer to Rec Room – Against Gravity’s popular VR chat app – will be fully staffed with paid Facebook staff known as guides to get new players on board and to model the behavior.
Speaking to Ars Technica, Facebook explained the decision, describing the staff as hosts in a physical space rather than moderators in a digital space.
“These are the people who will try to set the tone for the environment,” said Eric Romo, director of AR / VR experiences.
Facebook suggests that people are more likely to reproduce the behavior and mood of a room than actively trolling. Hence, the company hopes that the presence of paid hosts in the game will set the social norms of the space.
Meaghan Fitzgerald, director of AR / VR content marketing, said, “Sometimes people want to cause trouble. But more often they don’t know how to act. If you see someone walking around and screaming, you will be walking around and screaming.
“When you see someone having a conversation about,” Hey, this is a new activity, would you like to try it out? “Leads, this changes the tone of the room. People are really influenced by it.”