Scientists Working on AI Built From Human Brain Cells

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    Two US Democratic senators have called on Facebook (now Meta) founder Mark Zuckerberg to drop plans to open his Metaverse platform to teens, citing the company’s past raised concerns about the handling of young people’s data and privacy.

    The call came after Apple blocked an update to its email app BlueMail that incorporated aspects of ChatGPT technology, citing age restrictions.

    and joint letter Senators Ed Markey and Richard Blumental told Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg of plans to expand access to the Horizon Worlds application, the flagship social virtual reality (VR) platform set in the Metaverse. We have asked the social media company to take it down.

    Also Read: EU Antitrust Director Strengthens Rhetoric on Metaverse, AI Regulation

    Meta can open access to horizon world For users aged 13 to 17 this March who are struggling to grow their VR business, according to to the Wall Street Journal. This app is currently available to users over the age of 18.

    “Meta’s plans to target young people with its offerings in the Metaverse are particularly concerning given its consistent failure to protect young users,” the senator wrote. “With a documented track record of failing to protect children and teens, Meta has lost the trust of parents, pediatricians, policy makers, and the public.”

    Meta-targeting teens to grow their user base

    Meta plans to release its Horizon Worlds app to teens as part of an effort to grow its user base to 1 million by the end of the year, according to Horizon VP Gabriel Aul. I quoted an internal memo. He told employees that getting younger users on board is a top priority on the agenda.

    “Competitors today are doing a much better job of meeting the unique needs of these cohorts,” said Aul, according to the WSJ. “For Horizon to be successful, it must first and foremost serve this cohort.”

    Meta, which owns Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, is the world’s largest social media company with 3.59 billion daily active users, according to Statista. The company pivoted to his Metaverse in 2021, changing its name from Facebook to Meta to reflect its new focus.

    But Meta’s metaverse experiments have been terrible so far. Reality Labs, the unit tasked with spearheading the company’s Metaverse ambitions, posted a $13.7 billion loss last year, forcing Meta to lay off thousands of jobs in the division.

    meta spokesperson Said Business Insider says the VR headsets used to access Horizon Worlds, the company’s Quest VR platform, “have always been designed for people ages 13 and up.” Therefore, it “makes sense” for the company to expand to younger people.

    “Teens are already spending time with Quest in a variety of VR experiences, and we want to ensure that Horizon Worlds continues to deliver great experiences with age-appropriate tools and protections. We are,” a source told Business Insider. .

    “The Metaverse Threatens Teenage Happiness”

    Horizon Worlds is a “cumulative set of immersive virtual reality experiences” that allow users to participate in virtual events, play games, and communicate with others.

    In the letter, Senators Markey and Blumenthal criticized Meta for past misconduct related to how it handles the personal information and privacy of children and young people. They fear the company is threatening the lives of American teenagers.

    “The strategy of inviting young users into the digital space with its potential harm should not be driven by the goal of maximizing profits,” the senator wrote. “I urge you to immediately stop Meta’s plans to involve teenage users in Horizon Worlds.”

    The letter describes research into user vulnerabilities in the metaverse, covering privacy violations, health and physiological issues, harassment, and more. He also added that Metaverse users, including children, “are exposed to abusive behavior such as bullying, threats of violence, and sexual content every seven minutes.”

    Senator Markey had previously called on the U.S. Federal Trade Commission to investigate “companies seeking to build apps in the Metaverse, particularly with respect to children’s privacy and security,” according to industry media.

    Apple blocks updates to BlueMail app

    The senator’s letter came when Apple blocked an update to an email application called BlueMail. BlueMail uses a customized version of OpenAI’s GPT-3 language model. This is the technology that powers the very popular chatbot ChatGPT.

    According to Ben Volach, co-founder of app developer Blix, “Apple continues to block BlueMail updates, abuse BlueMail, and discriminate against us. seems to be unrestricted,” he says. Said Reuters.

    Apple last week rejected the update and asked Blix to either fix the app’s age restrictions for users over the age of 17 or implement content filtering, according to documents seen by Reuters. According to Blix, several other apps with similar functionality on the App Store are not age-restricted.

    “We want fairness. If we need to be 17 or older, others must,” Volach said. murmured.

    Apple has evaluated the complaint and said developers have the option to appeal the rejection through the App Review Board process. ChatGPT has taken the tech world by storm, with Google, Microsoft and others rushing to release their own versions of his AI bot.


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