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Metaverse: You can't walk on this land or build a house, but plots of land still sell for thousands of pounds

Metaverse: You can’t walk on this land or build a house, but plots of land still sell for thousands of pounds

Johnny McMamelley has spent nearly £5,000 on the land.

But he cannot physically walk on this land – nor can he live on it or build a house on it.

This is because the 23-year-old has invested in the metaverse, which means his land is completely virtual and only exists in a digital world.

McMulley, from Belfast, is one of many people who have decided to buy virtual property in the Metaverse area.

Last year, virtual land deals totaled $350m (£267m) on The Sandbox, the world’s largest digital ownership platform, according to a report from the Center for Finance, Technology and Entrepreneurship.

Another $110m (£84.2m) in transactions was made on Decentraland, the second largest Metaverse platform.

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The metaverse allows users to interact with others, play games, and build art galleries and stores. Photo: Johnny McCamameli

What is metaverse?

The metaverse is not a single digital space. It is a network of virtual reality worlds, created by companies and platforms, where users can interact, play games, participate in events and purchase land.

Horizon Worlds is one of the most popular metaverses. It was created by Facebook, which has now changed its name to Meta as the tech giant shifts its focus to virtual spaces.

Other brands have also announced their own digital worlds.

Manchester City plans to build its first Metaverse football stadium in partnership with Sony.

McCamley, CEO of CryptoClear, bought his land in The Sandbox last October. He said, “There are casinos in the metaverse and there are also museums, but there are also events like podcasts and conferences I have attended. So the best way to look at it is to take the real world and make it digital beyond the likes of Zoom.”

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Facebook renamed Meta in October 2021

Why do people buy virtual real estate?

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For McMulley, the opportunity to get credit in this fictional world was an opportunity not to be missed, although market uncertainty and price volatility make it a very risky investment.

It’s like any new investment, any new asset class. When I got into Bitcoin when it was $300, I was told it was too risky, same with Ether at $4. I think getting land in Decentraland for $4000 is absolute. He said.

He plans to delay his purchase by 10 years: “I think the metaverse will mature in about a decade and I will consider selling the land when the time comes.”

Land owners can also use their virtual spaces to design experiences for others to enjoy.

“Lots of communities are favourites. A really good example, I think it’s ‘gecko beach’ made by someone, as you can imagine, it’s a gecko infested beach,” said McCamelli.

Johnny McMulley from Belfast owns three virtual lands in the Metaverse area
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Johnny McMulley from Belfast owns three virtual lands in the Metaverse area

Find a home in the virtual world

Finding the perfect home in the Metaverse is like real life.

Land adjacent to roads and near desirable areas such as “fashion” or “museum” areas will command a higher price and will be more attractive investment opportunities.

In the Sandbox, the bustling downtown areas near other attractions are much more expensive than the newer suburban neighborhoods.

Who your neighbors are will also affect the value of your property.

In September 2021, rapper Snoop Dogg announced the digital “Snoopverse” on The Sandbox.

Two months later, a property adjacent to his land sold for more than $450,000 (£350,000).

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But unlike traditional real estate purchases, there is no third party or legal presence that can guarantee the legality of the business.

This can be risky when buying on a secondary market such as OpenSea, where purchases are made with cryptocurrency.

& # 39;  Meta Architects & # 39;  Help design interactive virtual spaces for individuals and companies
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Meta engineers help design interactive virtual spaces for individuals and companies

Why do people build virtual properties?

In addition to the land owners, there is a new generation of “meta-engineers” who design virtual spaces.

Stavros Zachariades is a traditionalist architect working in south London, but he started designing for the digital world to tackle the pandemic after his brother Adonis Renovi founded NFT Market.

The 37-year-old model recently designed pop-up stores for Fashion Week.

“Drag in the metaverse and build in the metaverse is [people and businesses] said mr. Zacharias.

“They can showcase their products. We can provide meeting spaces for different people, especially now with COVID and in the last couple of years people have become more distant.

“You can get, from the realms of super science fiction, floating buildings that spin and morph – and the flip side of classic and historic architecture styles.”

He believes that the metaverse can open doors for those who have no connection in real life: “I was thinking about how to change accessibility, for example, that a person without the same mobility could be the same in the metaverse. Why not?”

With the increasing demand for virtual real estate, & # 39;  Meta-architects' come forward to help design interactive digital spaces.  Photo: Stavros Zakariadis
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With the increasing demand for virtual properties, “meta-architects” are stepping in to help design interactive digital spaces. Photo: Stavros Zakariadis

“It is impossible to know the end of the match.”

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But many warn that these investments may falter.

Birmingham-based YouTuber “Mitch Investing” regularly covers topics such as personal finance and emerging technologies on his channel.

He believes that the promises of metaphysics to become a part of our daily lives may be overstated.

“It’s still so early in its development that it would be like investing in a company that’s only been in the works for a year. I’m not sure if it’s going to take off, I’m not really sure where the company is headed, and I’m not sure how the business model will evolve either.” … It’s very speculative in my view.”

There is a concern that not all virtual worlds will be able to attract a large enough number of users.

He warned that “there may be thousands of metaverses such as websites today. It is impossible to know the endgame.”

Youtuber Mitch Investing believes that buying a virtual property is a risky investment strategy
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YouTube Mitch Investing believes that buying a virtual property is a risky investment strategy

Risks and Volatility

The Financial Conduct Authority has described crypto assets as “extremely high-risk speculative investments” and warned that people trading them should be prepared to lose all their money.

There are also broader concerns about users’ safety in terms of online harm.

The newly introduced online safety law will take into account activity in the metaverse, where companies are required to take action if their users commit fraud, including those in VR spaces.