Beginning June 26th, the New York City Pride March will attract as many as 2 million attendees and spectators, making it the biggest event for the LGBT community in North America. This year is happening not only in June but also in the Metaverse.
Metaverse LGBT event organizer MetaPride Land is hosting a series of celebrations in the sandbox and decentraland, with concerts and performances on the streets and venues in New York next week.
Matt Stephenson, founder of Metapride Land, a former media executive at Time magazine, said Metaverse opens the door to a much wider community, regardless of geographic location or circumstances.
“There are still 68 countries around the world where it is illegal to be gay. In the United States, there are more than 200 bills that target our community in some way, form or form,” Stevenson said. I am. Forkast.. “In June of this year, I felt it was very important to provide a space that I could access wherever I was and to come in and celebrate my life.”
Stevenson said he wants to build a space in the Metaverse that resembles a real LGBT center where queer people can come to look for resources such as counseling services.
It is he who has such an idea on how the Metaverse as a technology to develop Web3.0 iterations of the Internet can provide opportunities for marginalized communities to connect and express themselves freely. Not just.
Two major developers of the Metaverse, Decentraland and Sandbox, are hosting a pride event to celebrate New York.
People of Crypto, a New York-based Metaverse Innovation Lab, will use June to airdrop 8,430 NFT avatars for use in sandboxes featuring a variety of styles, sexuality and skin tones.
The Crypto people and the sandbox will launch a “valley of affiliations” on June 24th to build what’s called a “culture berth” to invest in and promote projects that represent colored races and LGBT creators. intend to do something.
Decentraland will host a series of events and panel discussions in the virtual world, covering LGBT inclusion and the economic empowerment of the queer people.
Simone Berry, co-founder of People of Crypto, said: Forkast In an interview.
“By creating a game that offers a variety of stories and actually promotes real self, non-player characters in wheelchairs, non-binary black characters, and LGBTQ characters, you can actually customize your avatar and identify yourself. Can be, “Berry said.
Akbar Hamid, another co-founder of People of Crypto, said the team has been in the Web3 industry for a long time and “has seen a lack of diversity in this area.”
People of Crypto not only creates NFT avatars, but also develops games that live in the sandbox. In this game, gamers do quests to learn how to express themselves.
“Our game is a social experience,” says Berry, who goes through various stages to interact with non-player characters and talk about differences and identities.
“We understand that the game is primarily a place for white men, probably because the story is also built for it,” she said.
Stevenson of MetaPride Land said that queer people need a lot of courage to step into and interconnect physical buildings, and for many, the internet is the first and only way for them to interact. Said it would be a safe place for you.
“What we like about what Web3 and the Metaverse offer is not only that level of autonomy, but also the safety of experiencing it from home,” says Stevenson.
“Many of us don’t feel safe to leave the house, leave the bedroom, or interact with family and friends because they are afraid of oppression and are unacceptable.”
David Cash, CEO of Cash Labs and event curator at Decentraland, said: Forkast The Metaverse allows communities to spawn “in a more specific way” compared to other online platforms.
At a more practical level, Cash said, “What if you live in Saudi Arabia or a country where queer is in dire straits and you can’t openly and openly celebrate your pride with your own skin?” ..
According to Stevenson, as Web3 advances, it’s important to ensure that it can be expressed early in development.
“Involving more queer or deprived individuals in these spaces will at least represent us when these platforms are being built, or in our best interests. There is an opinion on how things need to be built to make sure they are represented, “Stevenson said.
“I still feel that our community is being leveraged to check it out. [diversity] box. “
According to Cash and Stevenson, June has become an important month for the LGBT community, where all sorts of celebrations take place, but advocacy shouldn’t end there.
“Every June, there are many brands, businesses, companies and companies that sell products that target the community with a rainbow flag across the logo,” says Stevenson. “And at the end of June, they all disappear.”
“It doesn’t end there,” said Cash, who helps host LGBT events and panel discussions in the Metaverse.
“For the queer people, we are queer 365 days a year. We will not turn it off at the end of June.”