This is the first installment in a series about what makes avatars useful in Social VR environments.
Author’s note: Many of the anecdotes about avatars that get recounted are about unfettered self-expression. And how Social VR platforms allow people to finally express who they really are, and control exactly how they are perceived by those around them.
I believe that many of the stories my Social VR peers repeat represent outliers for multiple reasons – including many people not having a safe outlet for self-expression in their real life, or they are folks with excellent 3D art skills who can customize their avatars to a very high degree. This series of posts is intended to give other considerations about what makes an avatar useful beyond radical self-expression. Throughout this introduction, we’ll look at how creating psychological ease between the avatars and the environment can increase motivation and change user behavior.