Arabic AR Chinese (Simplified) ZH-CN English EN French FR German DE Japanese JA Portuguese PT Russian RU Spanish ES Ukrainian UK

Diversity in VR: Lessons from the Oculus Launchpad Initiative

Latest news

    dale-henry-avatarIn March 2016, Oculus announced their Oculus Launchpad program with the idea that in order for VR to be successful, then there needs to be a diverse range of content created from diverse set of creators who are informed by different ethnicities, cultural backgrounds, and gender identities. Oculus brought together over 100 diverse content creators for a one-day training, and awarded scholarships to 11 projects from the dozens of prototypes submitted at the end of the program. Oculus Launchpad participant Dale Henry wrote up a detailed critique of the Launchpad program that provided a lot of constructive criticism for improvements that he’d like to see.


    I reached out to Henry to unpack his feedback on the lessons learned from the Oculus Launchpad program, but we also talk what the larger VR community can do to support diverse initiatives such as different community-driven mentorship models. We also talk about his personal journey in using VR to help children on the autism spectrum deal with bullying, and some of his struggles as an aspiring VR developer. We also dive into some deeper systemic issues, and have some difficult conversations about how only 1% of funded start-ups have black founders, larger diversity in tech issues, some of the unconscious biases that women and people of color face in raising funds, and whether or not VCs even know how to evaluate people of color.

    I reached out to Oculus for a comment on the improvements that they’re making for the second iteration of the Oculus Launchpad program, and it looks like they’ve integrated a lot of the specific critiques from Dale and expanded their mentorship program. Here’s the kickoff message from Oculus VR’s program manager for diversity and inclusion, Ebony Peay Ramirez.

    Henry would also like to see more transparency in how the money is being allocated, some of the metrics for success, a more detailed roadmap that shows how to grow and sustain these diversity initiatives, whether there are other external diversity initiatives that Oculus/Facebook is supporting, and some candid feedback of their own internal lessons learned so that other VR companies can learn from these programs.

    Henry argues that everyone benefits from diversity in VR initiatives, and that he’d like to see more openness and transparency in these efforts to provide more opportunities for feedback, but also the possibility for more collaboration amongst competing VR companies to share insights and combine resources to support larger diversity efforts in the VR and tech ecosystem.

    Support Voices of VR

    Music: Fatality & Summer Trip

    View the original article:

    The post Diversity in VR: Lessons from the Oculus Launchpad Initiative appeared first on Road to VR.

    In the same category are

    Oculus to Scrap Trackpads on Santa Cruz Controllers in Favor of Buttons & Sticks At GDC 2018 this week, Oculus revealed some additional details surrounding their high-end standalone VR headset prototype, Santa Cruz. Among those det...
    Oculus Home to Get Multiplayer & User-generated Content This Summer At GDC 2018 this year, Oculus released word during their ‘Inside Oculus 2018’ developer talk that Home, the customizable user space for Ri...
    GDC 2018: ‘Inside Oculus 2018’ Session, Live Blog @9:30AM PDT GDC 2018 is in full swing and we kick of Wednesday with a Live Blog of Oculus’ “Inside Oculus 2018” session, which is set to give de...
    Oculus Artist’s ‘Quill’ Shorts Show the Incredible Potential of Illustrating & Animating in VR Quill, Oculus’ VR painting and drawing tool, recently saw a major update which added animation tools to the software, allowing users to create a...
    Oculus to Show Brand New Game Demos at GDC, Detail What’s Ahead in 2018 GDC, hosted later this month in San Francisco, has long been an important event for Oculus. This year the company says they’re bringing brand ne...
    Oculus Rift Surpasses HTC Vive in Steam Majority Market Share for the First Time According to Valve’s February Steam hardware and software survey, the Oculus Rift is now the most used VR headset on the Steam platform, taking ...

    Leave a comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *