Our third Responsible Innovation Principle, “Consider Everyone,” reads as follows:
In a world where augmented and virtual reality technology might someday be ubiquitous, it’s critical that we consider everyone who comes into contact with our products. We build products that are inclusive of our diverse community and design hardware that isn’t one-size-fits-all. Just like when the camera was invented and society established norms around when it was appropriate to take photos, we also need to consider people who aren’t using our products, such as by adding indicators when cameras are in use. We know we can’t do this alone, so we conduct user research and work with in-house and external experts.
Within the context of the “Consider Everyone” Principle, we are specifically interested in a set of topics related to non-user and bystander experiences in public and private spaces, across a variety of cultural and socioeconomic circumstances, with particular attention to communities that could be disproportionately impacted by misuse (e.g., communities of color).
Areas of interest include, but are not limited to, the following:
1. What are the unique implications for bystanders who are members of an impacted or vulnerable group?
- How can we build on our understanding of general bystander privacy concerns and develop a more segmented understanding of the impact of being a bystander for vulnerable groups (e.g., people of color, children, women, and so on)?
- How should design decisions (e.g., how we signal that a device is capturing audio or video) address the needs of groups who may not feel empowered to confront owners?
- How does one’s immigration status change the impact of being a bystander?
2. How do expectations of privacy change across public, quasi-public, and private spaces?
- What frameworks exist for understanding what constitutes a private vs. general-use public space vs. specific-use public space? How can we apply them to norm-building around AR/VR technology?
- What norms should be developed around the use of AR/VR technology in public spaces? How does this change for public spaces that disproportionately serve impacted communities (e.g., in low-income communities)? How does this apply to workplaces, as quasi-public spaces with unique expectations for privacy? How does this apply to places that are public for some but private for others, like outdoor spaces where under-housed or homeless people may live?
- What research exists for defining social and cultural norms around private spaces, and how does that differ from culture to culture? How might this research apply to virtual spaces?
- How can device wearers and/or owners of private spaces create social norms to govern how the public interacts with them?
- In the context of AR/VR products that affect or incorporate businesses, what can business owners do to encourage or enforce best practices around respecting private spaces?
3. To what degree do cultural attitudes towards bystander privacy differ around the world, and how should that inform the way we think about privacy by design for AR/VR products?
- How should we think about cultural attitudinal differences as they relate to privacy and emerging technology?
- How do people’s understandings and attitudes towards ubiquitous recording change in different regions of the world? How does this differ across cultures, levels of economic development and market type, and government structure?
- What constitutes private spaces? How do people’s understanding of what constitutes a private space vary across cultures within the U.S. and from a non-U.S. perspective?
4. How could AR/VR exacerbate or ameliorate tech-driven inequality and, more specifically, racial inequity?
- What will it mean for society if some people have access to this technology and some people don’t? How might this exacerbate the digital divide?
- How might ubiquitous cameras be a means of combating inequity and inequality? How might they contribute to inequity and inequality? How could products be designed to avoid contributing to inequity and inequality?
- How might AR be used as a tool for social justice or economically disadvantaged communities?
- How could AR be designed for low tech literacy?
- How could AR be a tool for accessibility, to improve the lives and experiences of users with disabilities?