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

Johnny McMameli spent around £5,000 on the plots.

But he cannot physically walk on this land – he cannot live on it or build a house on it.

Indeed, the 23-year-old invests in metadata, which means that his territory is purely virtual and only exists in a digital world.

McMulley, from Belfast, is one of many who have decided to buy virtual properties in the Metaverse space.

According to a report by the Center for Finance, Technology and Entrepreneurship, virtual land deals on the biggest digital property platform The Sandbox reached $350m (£267m) last year.

Another $110m (£84.2m) was traded on Decentraland, the second-largest Metaverse platform.

The metadata store allows users to interact with others, play games, and create art galleries and stores. Picture: Johnny McMameli

What is the Metaverse?

The metadata store 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, attend events and purchase land.

Horizon Worlds is one of the most famous metaverses. It was created by Facebook, which changed its name to Meta when the tech giant focused on virtual spaces.

Other brands have also announced their own digital worlds.

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

CryptoClear CEO McCamli bought his land in The Sandbox last October. “There are casinos in the Metaverse and there are also museums, but there are also events like podcasts and conferences that I have attended before. So the best way to look at it is to take the real world and spin it. Beyond the likes of Zoom to digital.”

Facebook renamed Meta in October 2021

Why do people buy virtual real estate?

For McMulley, the chance to lay claim to this fictional world was an opportunity not to be missed, despite the market uncertainty and price volatility that made it such a risky investment.

“Like any new investment, any new asset class. When I entered Bitcoin at $300, I was told it was too risky, like Ether $4. I think buying land from Decentraland for $4,000 is absolute. . okay,” he said.

He plans to put his 10-year purchase on hold: “I think the metaverse will mature in about ten years and I will consider selling the land when the time comes.”

Landowners can also use their sandboxes to design experiences that others can enjoy.

Mr McAmely said: “Community lands are my favourite. A very good example is that it is a ‘geko beach’ built by someone, a beach infested with geckos as you can imagine,” he said.

Johnny McCamley from Belfast owns three virtual domains in the Metaverse region
Johnny McCamley from Belfast owns three virtual domains in the Metaverse region

Find a house in the virtual world

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

Land adjacent to roads and close to popular areas such as ‘fashion’ or ‘museum’ will charge a higher price and provide more attractive investment opportunities.

At The Sandbox, the more congested central areas near other attractions are much more expensive than new suburban neighborhoods.

Who your neighbors are will also affect your property value.

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

Two months later, a property next to his land was sold for over $450,000 (£350,000).

However, unlike traditional real estate purchases, no third party or legal entity can guarantee the legitimacy of transactions.

This can be risky when buying on a secondary market like OpenSea, where purchases are made in cryptocurrency.

& # 39;  Meta architects & # 39;  Help designing interactive sandboxes for individuals and businesses
Meta-architects help design interactive sandboxes for individuals and businesses

Why do people build virtual properties?

In addition to landowners, there is also the new generation of “meta-architects” who design virtual spaces.

Stavros Zachariades is a traditional architect working in South London, but started designing for the digital world to fight the pandemic after his brother Adonis Renovi founded NFT Market.

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

“Drag to metastore and compile to metastore: [people and businesses] They can show what they are talking about,” Mr. Zacharias said.

“They can present their products. We can provide meeting spaces for different people, especially now with COVID and over the past two years people have moved away.

“From the realm of super sci-fi, you can experience the other side of rotating and changing floating buildings and classic and historic architectural styles.”

He believes that the metaverse can open doors for those who are not connected in real life: “I was thinking about how to change the accessibility, for example a person who does not have the same mobility can be equal in the metaverse. Why not?”

With the growing demand for virtual properties, & # 39;  Meta-architects stand out to help design interactive digital spaces.  Image: Stavros Zakariadis
With the growing demand for virtual goods, “meta-architects” are stepping in to help design interactive digital spaces. Image: Stavros Zakariadis

“It’s impossible to know what the final match will be.”

But many warn that those investments could plummet.

YouTuber “Mitch Investing” from Birmingham regularly explores topics such as personal finance and emerging technologies on his channel.

He thinks the promises of the metaverse to be part of our daily lives may be overstated.

“It’s so early in development that it’s like investing in a company that’s only been in business for a year. I don’t know if it’s going to take off, and I’m not sure in which direction it’s going to go. The company is leaving and I don’t know how the business model will evolve either… I think it’s very speculative.

It is feared that all virtual worlds fail to attract enough users.

“There may be thousands of metaverse like websites today. It’s impossible to know what the endgame is.”

YouTuber Mitch Investing thinks buying virtual property is a risky investment strategy
YouTuber Mitch Investing thinks buying virtual property is a risky investment strategy

Risks and Volatility

The Financial Conduct Authority has described crypto assets as “very high-risk speculative investments” and warned that those who trade with them should be prepared to lose all their money.

Additionally, there are broader concerns about user safety in terms of online harm.

The new online security bill will take into account the activity in the metadata that companies must take action on if users commit fraud, including in areas of virtual reality.

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