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Virtual Reality News coming soon

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posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 08:15 AM
How virtual reality could put us into news stories

News reports often feel remote and irrelevant to our lives. But will that change with “immersive journalism” that places viewers in the centre of the story?
Nonny de la Pena, senior research fellow at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Journalism, does this by mixing traditional journalism with immersive gaming technology. Her team might record sound clips on the ground before combining them with visual reconstructions of the scene.

Some pretty cool technology I must admit, and likely to be very useful in reconstructing crime scenes or events from a historical point of view, if used responsibly.

The thing is though, I fear this would be used to further manipulate the masses in a media rich enviroment that already well understands the mechanisms of deceit and manipulation.

The viewer would then wear virtual reality goggles that track their position in the room and translate their movements into the scene in front of their eyes. In a documentary about Syria, for instance, de la Pena placed viewers in a street as a bomb exploded so that they could witness the terror unfolding – before then taking them for a walk around a refugee site.

So far she says the users’ experiences have been extraordinary, with many reacting very emotionally to the stories.

Now imagine such a thing being used. Could inputs be falsely fed to the system? After all, the report would have to create the VR report right, so they might include biased audio/visuals cues? What about events as given in the example that create strong emotional reactions (and indeed events like 9/11) that may be inaccurate? It is hard to change what someone believes at it stands, let alone following a strong emotional tie to that belief. How will government use this technology on the masses? How will corporations and the media?

posted on Aug, 30 2014 @ 02:27 PM
It sounds cool, and It seems a great entertainment idea, but mixing news with entertainment, could have actually the long term effect of desensitisation towards different issues, and this example:

In a documentary about Syria, for instance, de la Pena placed viewers in a street as a bomb exploded so that they could witness the terror unfolding
is not my Idea of entertainment. Or change that to any news report about Gaza/Israel, or any other scenario where civilians are actually killed.
Completely agree that it could be used to manipulate even further the masses by inputting false information in the VR program or not showing other aspects of the issue at hand.

That said, It would be great for nature or wild animal documentaries, or for those ghost hunting shows.
Heck, it would be awesome to be virtually 'present' at a sold out gig by your favourite band! And I'm sure something like this isn't too far off, imagine all the extra money that gig organisers and artists would make by providing virtual live shows.


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