Jessica Outlaw, whose previous research on women and social VR I talked about previously, has published the results of her latest research: a survey of over 600 people of all genders on their experience with harassment in social VR.
Harassment is commonplace in VR. In past qualitative research, I studied sexual harassment of women. In my new project, in partnership with Pluto VR, I surveyed 600+ people who regularly use VR (Rift, Vive, PSVR, or Microsoft Windows Mixed Reality). It turns out that all genders are subject to multiple types of harassment in VR:
49% of women reported having experienced at least one instance of sexual harassment
30% of male respondents reported racist or homophobic comments
20% of males have experienced violent comments or threats
The full report can be viewed here. She summarizes her findings as follows:
- People want to be with their friends in VR
- 70% of those who have used multiplayer VR agree that it’s better with people they know
- People use single-player apps to avoid harassment
- Many avoid social VR spaces entirely
Thanks to Enrico Speranza who told me about this report!