August 9, 2022
Facebook will begin testing Oculus VR headset ads, users raise concerns on Twitter


Facebook is set to test ads in its Oculus virtual reality (VR) headsets. The social media giant said on June 16 that it would launch an in-headset advertising experiment with Blaston, a video game developed by Resolve Games. Ads will also appear on some other apps in the coming weeks. The primary objective, the company said, is to bring more people to VR, advance the consumer experience, and make progress on our long-term augmented reality (AR) initiative. In addition, it said it is also a step towards creating a healthy and “self-sustaining platform” for VR development. Users are not very happy with the move and shared their concerns on Twitter.

Facebook Reality Labs vice president Andrew Bosworth tweeted that Facebook wants to help developers generate revenue and help people find better experiences at better prices. “This is part of how we will create a healthy, self-sustaining platform for all,” Bosworth wrote.

If you’re worried about what ads you’re going to see, there’s some relief.

Bosworth said in a subsequent tweet that users can manage the ads they want to see, and that “we’re including controls to hide specific ads or hide ads” from the advertiser.

“Advertising in VR will be different from ads elsewhere and this is a space that will take time and people’s reaction to get it right,” he said.

However, many people weren’t happy with Facebook’s decision to include ads in their VR experience, and some were furious in response to the announcement.

“The only way you can “do it right” is not to put ads in VR. The work done by Facebook over the past 20 years is disgusting and we can’t pretend that you do anything to society with decisions like these. Doing well,” user @boztank tweeted.

Another user @N3X15 tweeted, “I was going to buy an Oculus to test my game on that platform, but all of a sudden I didn’t feel that urge. Thank you for alerting us to your priorities.”

Another user, @disinformatico, said the ad was the last thing he wanted to see in VR. “It’s not the only way to get this right,” wrote the user.

Here are some more reactions to Facebook’s announcement:

one in blog postWith this, the company addressed some of the privacy concerns raised by users on Twitter. Facebook said adding privacy does not change its privacy or advertising policies. The company said that while the tests are ongoing, Facebook will receive information about how you interacted with the ad – whether you clicked on it or hidden it.

“We don’t use information processed and stored locally on your headset to target ads. Processing and storing on the device means it doesn’t leave your headset or reach Facebook servers, so its Cannot be used for advertising,” it said.

Facebook also said it doesn’t use the content of people’s conversations on apps like Messenger, Parties & Chat or your voice interactions to target ads. This includes any sound or audio that your microphone may select when you use our voice command feature, such as “Hey Facebook, show me who’s online.”




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