Will Virtual Reality Be The Ultimate Empathy Machine?

will virtual reality become the ultimate empathy machine

Before we call VR the ultimate empathy machine, let’s first start by understanding what empathy is; because we don’t really understand empathy. That’s the conclusion from our latest Em TV webcast.

The main argument behind VR as an empathy machine is this: we can experience a specific context / situation without having to be there physically.

As Chris Milk says, “VR is the last medium for storytelling because it closes the gap between audience and storyteller.”

But is that enough?

In this wide ranging conversation we explore and debate how Virtual Reality is going to play out and if it will be the empathy system of choice. We discuss the obstacles and what needs to happen for VR to become a true empathy machine.

Our panel for this discussion includes:

  • Manyata Malhotra, VR / EduTech for low-income communities;
  • Emily Taylor, AR and VR Research Analyst IDC Canada;
  • Jorge Barba, CEO of Netek – moderator.


  1. What are the components of Virtual Reality and how do they compare / contrast with Augmented Reality and Mixed reality?
  2. Does VR truly let the user experience empathy?
  3. What are the limits of VR?
  4. How will Virtual Reality play out in the future / what challenges do you foresee?
  5. What do you see empathy as – a skill, a mindset, a tool?
  6. How do Virtual Reality and Empathy relate to the context of work / life / society?

Watch our conversation below: