Meta Requests India’s TRAI to Address Metaverse, AI-Related Setbacks: Report

Meta has reportedly reached out to India’s telecom regulator seeking assistance in addressing metaverse and AI-related issues. In a detailed written letter to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), the US-based tech giant has asked for the creation of regulatory sandboxes to bridge the regulatory gaps and develop a nurturing policy work for the growth of these newer technologies. Owned by Mark Zuckerberg, Meta is trying to integrate metaverse tech into social networking and virtual reality paradigms to make online experiences more immersive.

Reaching out to TRAI, Meta has insisted that India must promote dialogue between the policymakers and the industry stakeholders to ensure the constant growth of technologies like AI and the metaverse.

“To the extent that any novel or unique issues arise over time as the metaverse continues to evolve, we call upon the Indian policymakers to address any emerging legislative gaps on a case-by-case basis, using evidence-based policy development. Policymakers must recognise that these technologies are nascent and that many of the benefits and potential risks that experts predict will be raised by advances that are still to come,” a report quoted Meta’s submission to TRAI as saying.

In India, the regulatory framework to govern over the Web3 sector is currently in the making. It is, however, noteworthy that the primary focus of the Indian government presently is to ensure that cryptocurrencies do not disturb the national financial stability.

In the backdrop, Web3 elements like the metaverse and NFTs are lingering without a concrete classification – slumping the growth of related companies.

As per Meta, “…regulatory sandboxes with clear exit criteria can allow industry participants to offer products to limited numbers of consumers in a more controlled environment, or other experimental governance programs.”

To give a fresh twist to its family of apps and overall operations, Zuckerberg rebranded Facebook to Meta in September 2021. Despite this mega rebranding, Reality Labs, the metaverse-focussed division of Meta, lost a whopping $13.7 billion (roughly Rs. 1,12,200 crore) in 2022.

Despite clocking losses year after year, Zuckerberg remains firm on his prediction that the metaverse technology will evolve and see an adaption for day-to-day engagements.

Meta is now listing potential challenges that could obstruct the rise of technologies like metaverse and AI for daily use, which it feels must be discussed in tech-savvy nations like India.

“Like the Internet, the metaverse will not be limited to use from within defined, geographic parameters. The siloed nature of bordered approaches to regulation might impede interoperability and portability in the metaverse. Onerous requirements for local storage of data are already particularly challenging for smaller businesses and their cross-border activities,” Meta has told TRAI – hoping to convince the regulatory body to ignite discussions around these young technologies and solve issues.

As per Statista, it was estimated that the global metaverse market stood at $65.5 billion (roughly Rs. 5,44,035 crore) in 2022. In 2023, the market was expected to rise to $82 billion (roughly Rs. 6,81,082 crore) before surging to $936.6 billion (roughly Rs. 77,79,526 crore) by 2030.

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