Meta's Reality Labs has suffered a $21.3 billion loss since January 2022 and faces legal trouble with a lawsuit alleging unauthorized use of copyrighted material by comedian Sarah Silverman against Meta and ChatGPT creator OpenAI.
Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse Department Of Meta Has Lost $21.3 billion Since January 2022
Since the start of last year, Mark Zuckerberg's Metaverse division of Meta has lost an astounding $21.3 billion.
Reality Labs won't be the great hit the Facebook CEO had hoped.
Reality Labs, the commercial and research division that creates virtual reality software, has lost over $21.3 billion since January 2022, according to Meta's second-quarter statistics.
Sales for the department fell significantly from $339 million at the start of the year to $276 million in Q2 2023.
Experts predict that the worst is yet to come.
CFO Susan Li said in the report: “For Reality Labs, we expect operating losses to increase meaningfully year-over-year due to our ongoing product development efforts in augmented reality/virtual reality and investments to further scale our ecosystem.”
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She continued by saying that the division had suffered a further $3.1 billion loss in the most recent quarter.
The sales of Meta's VR headsets, which Zuckerberg called "the first mainstream headset with high-res color mixed reality," were a major contributor to Reality Labs' $13.7 billion loss and $2.16 billion in revenue last year.
Li said that while she expects the company's third-quarter revenue to be even with last year's, she believes Meta will likely outperform expectations.
“We anticipate our full-year 2023 total expenses will be in the range of $88-91 billion, increased from our prior range of $86-90 billion due to legal-related expenses recorded in the second quarter of 2023,” she added.
But Meta's money problems don't end here.
The comedian Sarah Silverman sued the business earlier this month for violating her copyright and using her work without permission.
Along with Christopher Golden and Richard Kadrey, Silverman is suing ChatGPT creator OpenAI, alleging that they trained their AI bots using their work without their consent.
According to The Guardian, the lawsuit outlines that writers ‘did not consent to the use of their copyrighted books as training material for ChatGPT. Nonetheless, their copyrighted materials were ingested and used to train ChatGPT.’
According to the Meta lawsuit, Zuckerberg utilized this dataset to train LLaMA, a collection of AI bots that belong to Meta.
This disclosure further complicates Meta's position, as it suggests a potential link between the company and the unauthorized use of copyrighted materials.
In conclusion, Meta's Reality Labs has faced a substantial financial setback, losing billions of dollars since the beginning of last year. The division's struggle with sales and rising operating losses presents challenges for Meta's overall financial performance.
Additionally, the legal dispute with comedian Sarah Silverman and other authors over the unauthorized use of copyrighted material by ChatGPT creator OpenAI adds to the company's woes and raises questions about data ethics and intellectual property rights in AI development. As Meta navigates these difficulties, it remains to be seen how the company will adapt and overcome these challenges to secure a more stable and successful future.