This is the 50th volume of InterMedia, the quarterly journal of the IIC which has consistently, almost religiously, charted developments and trends in media, communications and the digital ecosystem for decades – so it is only fitting that this issue spotlights the much hyped but little understood “metaverse”. The year 2022 marks 60 years since Morton Heilig’s Sensorama machine was patented, 30 years since Neal Stephenson coined the term “metaverse” in his novel Snow Crash, and 20 years since the first resident joined Second Life. Whether the metaverse is a new frontier or just the next buzzword is considered by Russell Seekins in a really fascinating article that explores what the metaverse is and could be; while, in an equally interesting article, Dario Betti identifies what businesses should and can do ahead of the creation of this new internet experience. On a very much related note, the IIC Future Leaders’ Competition for 2022 is soliciting essays on the topic “Across the metaverse: policy priorities”. Individuals aged 35 and under are invited to submit an essay by 20 June 2022, creating a picture of how they see this particular world evolving and considering whether steps should be taken now to help shape its future, or whether the sector should be left to develop without direct policy intervention. Ah, that dilemma again! Virtual worlds aside, it was with considerable excitement that the IIC team prepared for one of our first in-person events in the physical world since the COVID-19 pandemic was declared over two years ago. The IIC’s annual Latin American & Caribbean Telecommunications & Media Forum was in Miami and we relished the resumption of the face-to-face networking that many IIC members find so valuable. Chris Chapman, President, IIC
A note to readers from Chris Chapman, President, IIC
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