Facebook has been testing Horizon with an early group of creators. In the coming weeks, the company will start bringing some people from the waitlist into Horizon’s invite-only beta.
Horizon invites users to the virtual experiences designed and built by the community. In Horizon, you can build the things you want to see and places you want to visit.
Eventually, Facebook envisions large spaces where many people can gather in Horizon, but for now, up to eight people can share a space.
Once you’re in Horizon, you can join a Party to chat together as you navigate Horizon and check out featured worlds in the Horizon Plaza to see what’s new. You can also navigate to the menu, where you can search the published worlds in Horizon by name and find new places to explore.
Over the past few months, Facebook has been working with community members to pilot creation tools and start building worlds. Ferguson and other Horizon creators have built sorts of pioneering experiences that beta users can try out in Horizon. For a look at Ferguson’s world, and to hear from other Horizon creators, head over to the Tech@ blog.
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Reporting Inauthentic behavior
Everyone in Horizon needs to follow the Oculus Code of Conduct, and the platform is introducing new features to submit reports and address issues.
Users can access a personal Safe Zone through the wrist menu at any time in Horizon. Research has found that when people experience something overwhelming or surprising in VR, they want the option to step away first, and then take action second. Once you’re in your personal Safe Zone, you can mute, block, or report people and content around you.
Similar to the functionality launched with Oculus Venues several years ago, Facebook has improved the system to address issues as they happen.
If you mute, block or report someone, a trained safety specialist, who will not appear as an avatar, may remotely observe and record the situation to ensure safety. This way, they can submit additional evidence for us to review, and they can temporarily ban someone from Horizon while reports are reviewed.
Facebook will soon introduce a feature to make it easier for users to submit reports in Horizon. The Oculus headset will capture the last few minutes of the experience in Horizon on a rolling basis.
When a user submits a report, they can include this captured information as evidence of what happened. This information is collected through a rolling buffer that’s processed locally on the device, which Facebook claims “is overwritten over time”.
The platform also claims, captured audio data from this rolling buffer is not stored on their servers unless a report is submitted, however, they may store other data about your experience in Horizon in accordance with the Supplemental Beta Facebook Horizon Data Policy. When a user submits a report, safety specialists will use the information to take appropriate action and then delete the recordings.
The invite-only beta will be available on Oculus Quest and the Rift Platform in the US and Canada to start. You can add your name to the beta waitlist and register here.