As we move into the next generation of technology and digital interfaces, one must ask how this is relevant to your field. For example, in the 2000s, some lawyers thought social media would be a fad, but it wasn’t and has changed the landscape of how you connect with your clients. Even advertising has changed in the face of Social Media giants like Facebook and Tik Tok. So what’s next for technology and law firms?
The First Law Firm in the Metaverse
The Metaverse recently acquired its very first Personal Injury Law Firm.
The firm says the virtual office, located in Decentraland in Parcel -36, 150, will offer educational information about injuries and employment discrimination. Potential clients will be steered to the non-metaverse offices.
Roots of Virtual Law Firms: Second Life and the Changing Digital Landscape
Although this may sound new and different from other ventures in marketing and communication, this is not the first law firm we’ve seen outside of the real world. According to Artificial Lawyer,
“Fieldfisher (then Field Fisher Waterhouse) became the first law firm to open a virtual office on Second Life, back in 2007. Real transactions take place on the platform. Disputes, meant to be resolved in its virtual in-platform courts, sometimes spill into real-life courts. It has been joined since by quite a few other virtual world platforms that you’ve probably never heard of, but none of these emerged from the most popular group of social networking platforms in history. None have the same scale of financial resources and depth of R&D backing them.”
Zuckerburg and financial advisors believe there’s real potential in this landscape, that growth is inevitable in the VR/AR marketplace.
How the ‘Rule of Law’ in the Real World will Interface with that in the Metaverse
There are a lot of unknowns in the world of AR/VR that will affect real-world law. Understanding how to navigate these new waters is a learning process. There’s no doubt that new privacy measures, data sharing, and copyright law will expand to encompass this vastly growing ecosystem.
According to Reed Smith’s Guide to the Metaverse: “There can be no doubt that from a business perspective, the metaverse is now a critically important consideration and influence. People exist there and there is money to be had. Deciphering the law pertaining to these new online environments and being able to guide, advise, and support companies and individuals who operate in them will require both a strong handle on centuries of legal precedent and a mind that is open to adapting and learning new legal skill sets.”
Non-Fungible-Tokens (NFTs) are Changing the way we do Commerce
You may have heard of the digital art craze NFTs and wondered how an image or video could hold any intrinsic value? Non-Fungible-Tokens are blockchain-based ledgers based in an AR/VR setting. They may seem odd, but corporate interest is booming.
According to Reed Smith, “Taco Bell created five different taco-themed, animated NFTs and released five editions of each in early March 2021. The NFTs sold out in minutes, selling for as much as 1.5 wrapped ether (WETH) or approximately $2,600 (at the time of sale).
NFT products range across industries from traditional consumer packaged goods companies (Procter & Gamble introduced a non-fungible toilet paper called NFTP) to luxury brands (Jacob & Co. is auctioning off a one-of-a-kind NFT watch, with the highest bidder receiving a certificate of ownership, a case with a hard drive containing the NFT, and a digital rendering of a Jacob & Co. watch).
Designer Andrés Reisinger sold 10 pieces of NFT furniture that can be used in any 3D space or virtual world. Finally, the NBA partnered with Dapper Labs to develop a platform to sell NFT memorabilia. A LeBron James highlight recently sold for $200,000. Speaking of the NBA, the league has its own NFT network called Top Shot.
Top Shot has more than 800,000 accounts and more than $500 million in sales through Q1 2021. What are all of these Top Shot accounts spending their money on? Top Shot lets users buy and sell digital trading cards called “Moments,” which contain a video clip of a specific play, stats about the game and player, and a history of sales prices.”
It’s not just Facebook; there are multiple Metaverse Platforms
You may be under the impression that Zuckerberg is the only creator looking to delve into the AR/VR professional marketplace. On the contrary, several platforms offer different styles, functionalities, and purposes.
“We are a virtual/augmented reality software company dedicated to transforming how training & educational content is delivered and consumed globally by providing educational institutes and businesses with the tools they need to create their own content using virtual classrooms or virtual training environments.”
“Spatial is dedicated to helping creators and brands build their own spaces in the metaverse to share culture together. We empower our users to leverage their beautiful spaces to share eye popping content, build a tight knit community, and drive meaningful sales of their creative works and products. We also empower our users to create beautiful and functional 3D spaces that they can mint as NFTs and sell/rent to others looking to host mind blowing experiences.”
“The metaverse is the next evolution of social connection. Our company’s vision is to help bring the metaverse to life, so we are changing our name to reflect our commitment to this future.”
As the technology progresses, it’s possible we could see the options whittle down to one platform for all. Zuckerburg is attempting to create this universe with his platform, Meta, as he sees the potential to be ‘the platform of all metaverse platforms.’
Metaverse & Law Firms, what’s your take?
What are your thoughts on the Metaverse? Would you be interested in “opening” a virtual version of your law office in the Metaverse? In today’s fast-paced digital world, it could be a great opportunity for many businesses to reach out to an ever-expanding market. Many seeming fads of yesterday have become staples in our modern society, but many have gone to the wayside.
Quality content and marketing are never a fad, and if your firm needs help to keep up in the marketing of tomorrow, give Swell Services a try. We have a team of dedicated professionals ready to help you succeed.