Aug. 1, 2022

Metaverse Perceptions versus Reality

This week we're gonna blow the halftime whistle on our travels into the metaverse on Bubble Trouble. Today Will quizes Richard: Is the metaverse the next big thing? Or are we back in bubble trouble? What's the perception and where's the reality. If Richard was at a casino sitting behind Zuckerberg, watching him put all his chips on metaverse, would Richard be leaning over and moving his arm in the same direction--or would he be thinking that this isn't gonna work out well?

This week we're gonna blow the halftime whistle on our travels into the metaverse on Bubble Trouble. Today Will quizes Richard: Is the metaverse the next big thing? Or are we back in bubble trouble? What's the perception and where's the reality. If Richard was at a casino sitting behind Zuckerberg, watching him put all his chips on metaverse, would Richard be leaning over and moving his arm in the same direction--or would he be thinking that this isn't gonna work out well?


Will Page: Welcome back to Bubble Trouble. The conversations between the economist and author Will Page. That's me, and the independent analyst Richard Kramer, where we lay out some inconvenient T-R-O-O-T-H-S, trooths about how the financial markets really work. Now this week, we're going to blow the halftime whistle on our travels into the metaverse. Our Meta troubles investigation on Bubble Trouble.

So what I really want to do is to quiz Richard if, if he was at the casino sitting behind Zuckerberg watching him putting all his chips on metaverse, would he be leaning over and moving his arm in the same direction or would he be face palming himself thinking, "Whoopsie, this isn't gonna work out well?" Let's get back to that more in a moment.

Richard, welcome back to Bubble Trouble, sir.

Richard Kramer: Thank you, Will, and your spelling is as good as ever with trooths. [laughing]

Will Page: Oh by the way, I should say that the, the transcripts of Bubble Trouble, when I say the word look, the automated [inaudible 00:01:02] spell that word L-U-K-E. [laughing]

Richard Kramer: Spoken like a true Scotsman.

Will Page: Take a look out the window. Right. So we have got to get into this. We have had three incredible guests, very privileged to have these three guests on. But I want to ask you the same question that I've asked each of our guests, which is what in your opinion is a simple definition of what the metaverse is? And more importantly, what the metaverse isn't?

Richard Kramer: So a simple definition of what the metaverse might become would be a digital environment where many types of users and they may be computers or they may be individuals, can interact with one another. And they're be supporting a range of use cases, if you want to call it that. Uh, it could be for playing games. It could be for hosting meetings. It could be for doing training and seminars or education. But it is a digital environment in which users can come together and interact.

Will Page: That's what it is. Now, what is it not? What do you hear in terms of definitions getting bended around where you're like, "That ain't the metaverse, that's never going to be the metaverse?"

Richard Kramer: So there is a simple test for [laughs] whether you are in the metaverse. Pick up a pair of scissors or a pencil or anything like that, don't try this at home by the way, and just jab it into your thigh. If you scream out in pain, you'll know you're not in the metaverse. [laughs] I really don't have a lot of track or time other than as philosophical disquisitions or exercises in your freshman philosophy class or what have you for the notion that we're all living in a simulation, and somehow we've already entered the metaverse, we just don't realize the computers are playing us instead of us playing with and on and with, and, and engaging the computers.

Will Page: Now of all the rants I've heard you give me over the years, whether it's running on the heat or in podcast studios, one of my favorite ones is where you talk about aspiring CEOs telling their investment community that they own something. The right to win, the right to own a particular sector.

And one of the recurring themes we've had in our conversations with these three guests from the metaverse is you don't own it, yet some people are out there touting the fact that they plan to own it. But you don't own the internet-

Richard Kramer: Hmm.

Will Page: … you engage with the internet and you own platforms that sit on top of the internet, but what's your take when you hear, you know, leaders of industry say they plan to own the metaverse?

Richard Kramer: So I thought Yoshio did a terrific job in his podcast discussion with us of talking about all the reasons why one company is not going to dominate, and that it really needs to be a collective set of experiences that many companies can engage with. Very much like the internet today. Now-

Will Page: Like, like a telephone network as well, right?

Richard Kramer: So I, I would use a very simple word… Well, it's complicated word, but it has a very simple basic meaning in all our lives, which is interoperability.

Will Page: Mm-hmm.

Richard Kramer: For years and years the telecommunications industry got together and developed standards so that when you make a phone call from any country, the division of phone numbers and area codes and so forth was all agreed at a top level, and then how those numbers and IP addresses and all that would be allocated, those resources would be allocated. You wouldn't have the railways if you didn't standardize them on a single gauge. You wouldn't have time in the concept as we know it now had we not moved away from a system where every train station had their own time.

So you need to have interoperability. You need to have standards. It's in your beloved music industry, you can tell me in another podcast about what happened when you invented the humble mp3 file-

Will Page: Mm-hmm.

Richard Kramer: … and it was adopted widely as a standard. So this idea of one company defining all those standards, setting a de facto standard and claiming the right to win with everything is just not going to happen. It doesn't represent the collective endeavor of mankind. It could be a dystopian future where you get the splinter net where you've got lots of metaverses that don't inter-operate. And then, we'll all be forced to choose between individual brands not being able to support two or three or five of them at the same time on our backs.

Will Page: That's great. And then, you, you cited one lesson that Yoshio gave us. The other lesson I want to kind of delve into in part one here was the time it's gonna take. That is there's an investment thesis which is you can make a quick buck by investing in gaming. And Yoshio stressed that over the years, over the decades he's seen how this has gone wrong. Like good games do not happen in one year or two year. They take a long time.

A good metaverse is not going to happen five or 10 years. It's going to take a really long time. You want to just sort of build on that, because I keep asking these guests, is it the boy who cried wolf again or do we now have a wolf at the door? And if the wolf is there, and it's not at the door, how long we have to wait before it finally gets to our door and we see the impact of the metaverse and Facebook's earnings?

Richard Kramer: So there's two elements to that I'd, I'd break down. The first is that you have to contend with the entrenched interests before everyone jacks into this metaverse, [laughs] before we all swallow the red pill and go into the matrix.

Will Page: Red pilling. That's the term.

Richard Kramer: Before we all go there, there are a lot of habitual behaviors of things we've grown accustomed to doing. Playing video games via console, for example, that are not going to be easily surrendered. The muscle memory around that. The, the shared experience of doing that is not going to just be given up overnight.

So one of the things that we always like to talk about in Bubble Trouble is seeing these hockey stick growth curves massively up and to the right, global 2% GDP growth scenario. If you're going to have something explode and massively increase in scale, something else has got to go down. And it's the speed at which we give up what we're accustomed to now and why, for example, previous guests like Mike Falick will say, "We're still watching a heck of a lot of linear TV in our scheduled programming time." That's a very habitual established behavior and certainly for some big categories like sports.

Will Page: I'm sensing some cynicism here. I don't want to make you come across like a party pooper, because A, you throw phenomenal parties, and B, you do have buys on some of your stocks as well as sells.

Richard Kramer: There's a famous quote that cynicism is the protest of the week and I think to be a cynic is to give up. It's too easy. I'm very skeptical and my skepticism comes, or my skepticism stems from the second point I'd make about the timing of this metaverse, which is anytime you see something that involves the mash-up of multiple technologies, it always takes a while for all of those technologies to be knit together like a beautiful tapestry.

And now let me give you a really simple good example of that. Your buddy, Travis Kalanick, who you've been hanging out with him when he was CEO of Uber, breaking every local regulation in the book to get his taxi app established. Made a-

Will Page: He eats complexity for breakfast.

Richard Kramer: By whatever. He made a big stink, at one point, by talking about at the code conference how he was going to replace the guy in the front seat. Right? And from vents onward, we heard so much about autonomous driving. Now, here we are six or eight years later after Travis Kalanick made those statements and how many autonomous vehicles do you see passing you by on the road every day? Not many.

Now that is a classic example of involving a mash-up of a bunch of technologies, of semiconductor technology, being able to process all the inputs swiftly enough, of sensor technology, of being able to understand the environment the way humans can understand their environment, of cultural acceptance of who's going to want to get in the backseat of a robo-taxi without understanding the re- resolution of the trolley problem, which is you pull the lever of the trolley and smash yourself into a wall to save the five people that maybe five children that would have walked out into the street.

And then, you have a trillion dollar auto insurance industry that needs to figure out how to audit source code and how to insure these vehicles. So, you know, it's a great example of where it involves a mash-up of a lot of technology, it was predicted in 2015 or 2016 to be a world-changing event. And here we are seven or eight years later, it's still very slow to come. And no matter how much Elon Musk can over promote the autopilot feature and promise to bring autonomous vehicles to the market, there are a lot of regulations, there is a lot of entrenched behavior, and a heck of a lot to do on the technology roadmap to get that mash-up into a concrete, clear form where people can check whether it's better than the old version.

Will Page: It's making me think in that very mild-mannered Richard Kramer, right? There you mentioned the [inaudible 00:10:42] Podcast, which is a real good one. If you took the top 10 TV shows of commercial advertising in them, in the UK and compared them now to 10, 15, 20 years ago, have they actually seen a drop in revenues? Did the TV commercials in between the England, Italy, European Championship final see a drop in revenues?

No. Those linear broadcast hits despite all the talk of disruption are still scooping the pot in terms of ad spend.

Richard Kramer: The reality is that out of the top hundred shows watched in America in the last year, something like two-thirds were NFL football games and that's because you still have these mass audiences for sports events, which just don't lend themselves to time shifting.

Will Page: Mm-hmm.

Richard Kramer: You don't want to be watching the match three days later when everybody already knows the result, you've talked about it around the water cooler. And also something else that just sprung to mind to link my two key points here about the time it takes to develop technology and the time it takes to change behavior. With autonomous driving, how many people simply like to drive?

Now, I live in central London, I've never owned a car.

Will Page: Yeah.

Richard Kramer: I'm not into driving, but, boy, the auto industry has spent trillions of real dollars today in marketing in the past close to 100 years encouraging people to define themselves by what they drive. And clearly, because you only see ads of cars driving on empty roads zooming around, no, no one sits in traffic in a car ad-

Will Page: Yeah.

Richard Kramer: … enjoying the experience of being behind the wheel. And are you telling me that all of those petrol heads that love formula one racing and dream of being race drivers and love zooming around the rural roads if they can get in the middle of the night if they don't think they're gonna get done for speeding, those people are just going to abandon an experience that they've absolutely cherished.

I don't think it's going to happen. And I think with the metaverse, you have a long gestation period for behavior change alongside the long gestation period for technology development that, and both of those need to come together.

Will Page: Yeah. You've got a geek in the tech world thinking this is what consumers don't like to do, because they don't speak to people with policies. They just code all day. They've got people in the real world who's saying, "Actually, I'm kind of cool doing it and you don't need to displace it."

Richard Kramer: Before we go to the break, I want to raise one other point, because one of the things we've heard about the metaverse is we're all going to be sending our avatars to business meetings in the metaverse. Will, have you been asked to do any metaverse? Have, have you been asked to send your avatar to present at any metaverse conferences yet? But that's that, that's one of the theories. We, we won't be traveling, we'll be going with our avatars to meet people virtually.

Now, aside from the fact that we're all incredibly sick of Zoom calls from the pandemic, there's a lot of reasons why people go for business travel. First of all, if you look in the US, people get two weeks of holiday. So what do they do? They go on junkets. It just so happens there's a conference every week at some resort in Phoenix, Arizona or Miami, Florida in the middle of the winter so people who live in the north can go for work in quotes. By the way, there happens to be a golf course there, you might have to do some work on the golf course on Wednesday afternoon.

Will Page: And extramarital affairs on Wednesday evening as well. So yeah.

Richard Kramer: Absolutely. So you cannot do any of that stuff [laughs] with nearly the same degree of pleasure. In the metaverse, you can't tan in the metaverse. So that alongside a basic principle of information theory, a Shannon's information theory. It's all about bandwidth. When you're sitting in the room with someone, you're receiving a lot more information than you do in purely a stream of digitally encoded bits. Right?

Will Page: Yeah.

Richard Kramer: You get the smell of them. You get their body language. You get the vibes emanating off of them. You can go for a drink afterwards. You can see how the chemistry works out and whether you want to interact with clients or partners or customers or suppliers, you just don't have that experience when it's a purely virtual one. And we, human beings, are not ready to completely give that up yet.

Will Page: I want to touch on this idea of this trade-off. I think you're digging into here this perceptions versus reality trade-off, is that diversions widening? What's the [inaudible 00:15:14] industry in justifying perceptions? What's the business of maintaining those perceptions as reality differs? But just to kind of close off part one, just to share a beautiful story with you and our listeners when you talked about some people like to drive and, hey, I don't drive, but a lot of Americans do. In the Midwest America, they do, and they listen to country music.

And Ralph Murphy, rest in peace, God bless his soul, wonderful songwriter, lead member of ASCAP. He once told me the secret to success of country music is the writers in Nashville write compositions to the heartbeat that you would find yourself in when you're driving your car, which is why country music makes driving so enjoyable. And I just wonder that lesson that Ralph murphy told me in Nashville, whether anybody coding autonomous cars in Silicon Valley would even comprehend what that means. I really like doing this stuff. Don't displace it with technology, because I enjoy driving. More on that and part two will be back in a moment.

Welcome back to part two of Bubble Trouble where it's just myself and Richard Kramer in the studio today discussing perceptions versus reality and taking stock of three phenomenal guests on the metaverse from AmazeVR, IDG Consulting, and Eric Kress the famous gaming consultant. But we go down to rabbit hole in part two and I kind of want to really push Richard on where the pendulum is and his mind on the metaverse. Is he an optimist? Is he convinced by the, the upbeat tone of Ernest, Ernest Lee from AmazeVR that this thing is going to travel into ways and means that we hadn't thought of before, or is he perhaps more in there at Kress camp of our cynic? Which is the metaphor should be cool, but it's going to be niche. It's not going to be the trillion dollar industry that McKinsey makes out.

And maybe just to break it down for me, I've worked on VR music experiences. I've seen them. I just keep asking myself, "Do you think the people who work in real life, aka the festival promoters, do you really think that people are going to stop going to muddy fields in the summer in order to stare at a screen in their bedroom instead?

The answer for me is no. Richard, was this just cooked up during lockdown? And then, we're back to real life, it just becomes one of those crazy things we thought was going to be big, but it never really worked out. Where, where is pendulum just now in your head?

Richard Kramer: So as I look at concepts like the metaverse and how they got affected by lockdown. I think there are two lessons you can draw. The first is clearly that we had some dog years in those year and a half of lockdowns. For example, in e-commerce. It got a giant leap forward-

Will Page: Massive.

Richard Kramer: … and folks that might not have thought to do all their shopping online, it's normalized it. Now, there is still the majority of shopping that's done offline. There's all sorts of reasons why you want to go to a farmers market and see the produce you're going to buy, you want to go to the shop and try on the clothes and not get a dozen of them sent to you and send 11 back and keep one. There's all sorts of reasons. Retail therapy or just a day out that people are still going to physical shops. Well-

Will Page: And shoplifting, you can't steal online, you have to steal with [inaudible 00:18:37]

Richard Kramer: It's true. It's really, it's hard to shoplift online. [laughing] And Will, when I had to take you to the running shop to get your shoes fit, I mean you can't do that online. You can't start that experience of, "I need some decent running shoes, what brand should I buy? What's my gate? What's my size?" The size isn't the same for all brands, how, what's gonna work best for me? You need that advice.

So I think the lockdown period normalized or created the dog years leap forward for us having regular digital face-to-face communications. Yeah. There was FaceTime and Skype and all these things beforehand, but this routinized it. People would have sit there and have eight meetings a day one after another and we got very used to that. The idea that you can improve upon that experience, well, it's not hard because it got pretty damn miserable and you could see that the minute the lockdowns came off, we all rushed out to festivals and bars and back to physical contact and chemistry like we did before.

So it's not like we're not still having Zoom calls, but we want to reclaim those experiences. Now, what I took from Earnest and AmazeVR, I thought that was a terrific example of creating a differential experience. You can go to a festival, but you don't really know what it's like to be on stage with Megan Thee Stallion or the Rolling Stones.

Will Page: That was really persuasive.

Richard Kramer: You also realize that's something you're going to do for 20 minutes, not for the 8 or 10 or 12 hours a day you'll be listening to music.

Will Page: Sure.

Richard Kramer: You've got a quarter of a million people going to Glastonbury, they're not going for a virtual experience. They're going because they want to soak in the atmosphere. And, uh, I think we need to appreciate that it's going to need to create a differential unique experience, not simply take something that we were forced to do online and juice it up a little bit.

Will Page: The, the economist in me is thinking about AmazeVR for a second, which is how much would I pay to watch Mega Stallion's butt from 200 yards away in a stadium for two hours, and how much would I pay to watch Mega Stallions butt up close in VR for 20 minutes? And, you know-

Richard Kramer: Yeah.

Will Page: … which, what one would you value more [laughs] as well? That this perception, reality thing, we're, we're, we're digging into it, but now I want you to kind of bring the dagger out and shove it in the back of a culture that you've long had an issue with, which is the consultancy culture. You bring in the McKinseys, the Boston Consulting Groups, they cook up a report, they stick a number on there, they add three extra zeros to that number and say, "Here's the prospect for this sector." And they're doing it with the metaverse right now.

That feels to me like we're discussing perceptions versus reality. We're discussing the business of changing perceptions that are far different and will get even more different over time than they are from reality. You want to just cut into that, like do these companies make money by diverging perceptions versus reality and do they lose money when perceptions converge back on reality? It feels like a college industry and I'd love to just, you to sort of distill it down for me.

Richard Kramer: So a couple of things we want to dig into here. The reason we brought up McKinsey, you and I have been talking about it, is they put out a report that said the metaverse is going to be worth, [laughing] and I don't know exactly how they calculate it. My-

Will Page: The GDP of [inaudible 00:22:08] America.

Richard Kramer: Well, a lot more than that, because it's going to be $5 trillion by 2030. Now maybe they're envisioning a Weimar Republic hyperinflation scenario [laughing] in which we all have bags of Zimbabwean ducats or whatever it's going to be that are, and it costs us-

Will Page: Yeah. They didn’t stressed [inaudible 00:22:30]

Richard Kramer: … $26 million to have a cappuccino, [laughing] but that $5 trillion, number one, it was a, a, a huge round number. Number two, it was sufficiently far enough in the future that if they'd said by 2025, people would say, "Well, hang on a second." Whereas by saying 2030, it feels like, "Well, that's way beyond our planning horizon for any sensible company, let's just chuck it out."

Will Page: That's interesting. It goes beyond the five-year projection, therefore-

Richard Kramer: They can-

Will Page: … they can file under fiction and, and benefit from something which I learned from, uh, an amazing woman this week, the yeast of fiction. Like how you can apply the yeast to fiction into effect and watch it grow over time.

Richard Kramer: Absolutely.

Will Page: So there's a [inaudible 00:23:12] the yeast of fictions in these projections.

Richard Kramer: Even the, even the [laughing] technocrats of the French Republic post-war or the great leap forward in China under Mao, they all had five year plans. They didn't think beyond that. That was way too complicated. I get my hackles up when I see those giant numbers tossed out there, much like we had many of the early episodes just talking about sycophants and stenographers and, and the puff and stuff, pump and dump brigade in the, in the banks who, who masquerade as analysts, just there to, as you would say, um, praise not appraise.

So you had many companies that were seen as metaverse plays, and, and because there was such a huge prize at the end of 2030, no valuation metric could contain the enthusiasm for the analysts to those companies, even if they didn't really have any revenue yet. So I think it's that air cover that justification for open-ended investment at these new fields that is, that's like catnip. People can't resist it. How could you deny that it's going to be huge in the future? You're just a stick of the mud Luddite and you don't get that the generational change that's coming through, uh-

Will Page: The trains leaving the station and you're not on it.

Richard Kramer: Yeah. And your daughters will be going to university in the metaverse, uh, but at least your wife won't freak out because they won't have to be subjected to Fresher's Week, and what a crazy guy you were when you were an 18-year-old fresh into university.

Will Page: I get it. Now you mentioned a couple of past podcasts and they do seem to keep on getting excited. But one past podcast I want to link here, especially as we look back on 50 episodes of Bubble Trouble, our anniversary Richie is when you got your colleague Jesse on the podcast, a chicken shit club author, there's got to be something McKinsey types number which is extremely high, a bunch of companies believe it and invest in it, it doesn't go to become true.

And then, those executives who believed and invested in it, get jobs at McKinsey. Is there an element of like a carousel of like job security going on here?

Richard Kramer: Absolutely. And we'll have in a future podcast some people on to talk about how that whole world works, but I think just to nail it down to a single word, there is… Let me say that again. Just to nail it down to two simple words, there is no accountability for those forecasts. No one has their bonus at McKinsey riding on the fact that they need to cough up $5 trillion of spend to prove that their forecast was right in 2030.

It is just a number thrown out there to attract attention, to encourage a bubble so that you can get consulting fees about how to profit from the bubble. And then, when it doesn't work out, how to restructure your operations or cut your staff and retrench when the bubble turned out to have burst.

Will Page: That resonates and that's a two-sided coin, because nobody inside this company is investing in the metaverse have revenue targets either. So you can kick up a number and I can buy into and neither of us are accountable to the outcomes that follow our actions. This gets a bit worrying when you step back and look at it.

Richard Kramer: Yeah. And it's fascinating to think that television, which invented by a Scotsman, John Logie Baird, uh, has been around-

Will Page: From the university as well.

Richard Kramer: … has been around since the '30s really or '40s, and we're still looking at global video delivery platforms like YouTube, which are reaching billions of users every day and it is still fundamentally humans watching moving images.

Will Page: Mm-hmm. Yeah. Yeah. This is taking a cold shower in the middle of us, there is definitely optimism out there, but I think, uh, curb your enthusiasm becomes a t-shirt for this current run of podcasts.

Richard Kramer: Yeah.

Will Page: Let's get the results out. Now you've been asking guests to get smoking for quite a few weeks now, but now it's time to pass the duchy to the left-hand side. One or two smoke signals our audience need to pick up on when they need to know there's divergence between the perception and the reality of the bubble that's forming?

Richard Kramer: So let me get a little highbrow with you, Will, and I know it's the tricky one for you, even as educated as you are, but you think about Macbeth, one of Shakespeare's great plays and the witches were concocting the brew, a little bit of eye of newt and leg of frog and a pinch of powdered goblin or whatever they put in that witches brew.

And what you're looking at with the metaverse or autonomous driving or many of these other transformational technologies, and let's not go into the repulsive digital transformation phrase-

Will Page: That's what you see at billboards at airports, right?

Richard Kramer: What is being done here is you are taking a mash-up of existing technology roadmaps. Take autonomous driving it's, or, or take as an example augmented reality, which somehow we all might feel we're living in augmented reality, but it, the idea that you're going to superimpose digital images on top of other digital images that reflect the real world around us. Now that is a mash-up of imaging technology, compute, mobility, location, it, it requires all these different technologies to come together in the service of what? Of allowing kids to run around chasing Pokemon Go characters. [laughing]

So the first smoke signal I've got is when you're looking at some of these world-changing epoch defining technology leaps forward, you can deconstruct them as a mash-up of a bunch of incremental improvements that may finally be getting good enough. For example, our eye see in about 20k, video compression now is able to handle about 4k, maybe up to 8k in some areas, but until we can get videos rendered twice as good as the best picture you've ever seen, you realize your eyes see a heck of a lot better than any pixelated representation of reality might offer, and your brain will always notice the difference.

So again, you need to look that there is a series of incremental improvements needed and they all need to happen and come together. And instead of looking at the giant claim about the future, the way I look at these things, look at the giant, instead of looking at the giant boulder in the future, I would say, "Break it down into a series of small rocks and bits of gravel." Those are all the little leaps forward in technology. The incremental improvements that need to happen to make these big promises a reality.

Will Page: I like that. Let's stop that when I load up another. Give me a second smoke signal before you wrap up the show.

Richard Kramer: It's super simple. And that is all of these appeals to the glorious future don't factor in human behavior. Just something as simple as we're all going to be in autonomous cars, it might be safer, that's fine, but a lot of people like to drive. Tell them they can't drive anymore, because guess what? Autonomous cars don't work unless all the cars are autonomous. If you have some that are piloted by crazy humans and some piloted by robots, that introduces a whole new level of complexity to the equation.

And try telling the billions of people around the world who drive all the time that they'll never be allowed to do it again. It's going to take generations until they're willing to give it up.

Will Page: Fantastic smoking with you there. Richard, you want to give a close out the show by giving our audience a little tee up of who's up next?

Richard Kramer: Yeah. We had the idea to take this theme of perception versus reality, and talk about it in a range of different fields, whether it's the consultants we mentioned, the digital transformation experts that are milking the government for billions of fees, the PR folks, the advertising, and lots more. And just like we teed it up in the equity markets that people are always trying to shift perceptions or come up with an equity story to tell investors that always comes up against the, the, the hard realities of cash flows or for competition or other aspects of business that are impossible to ignore.

So that's been another episode of Bubble Trouble and we'll have another three episodes to come on the metaverse shortly. If you're new to Bubble Trouble, we hope you'll follow the show wherever you listen to podcasts. Bubble Trouble is produced by Eric Newsome, Jesse Baker and Julia Natt at Magnificent Noise. You can learn more at Will page and I will see you next time.