A popular GIF recently made the rounds showing a gamer fully equipped in a Samsung GearVR experience riding Boston’s Green Line public transit and reacting to the VR game while oblivious to those around him. Apparently the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority wasn’t quite as amused as the rest of us, and the agency has issued a statement expressing its concerns about the impending trend of VR gaming on-the-go.
Communicating with the Boston Globe, MBTA spokesperson Joe Pesaturo stated that “it’s not advisable” and that “the MBTA and Transit Police remind customers of the importance of being aware of their surroundings at all times.”
Boston police officer Sergeant Luke Taxter tweeted out his concern, writing that the footage depicts “the EXACT OPPOSITE of being aware of your surroundings.” He paired this tweet with the hashtag #softtarget, referring to how easily one could be robbed?or worse?when hindered by VR.
The Boston Globe reached out to the gamer in the video, Ryan Deame, who claimed he uses VR game’s to assuage the anxiety he feels riding public transit.
“This technology isn?t a bad thing. It’s a way to change our reality in a fundamental way,” Deame said. “It’s a tool that should be embraced and not looked down upon.”