Hi Alex! I thought I could somehow share what I experienced though I was not the one who was directly involved.
I have been hearing about the game Mobile Legends for a fairly long time and that many children and teens are getting hooked into it. I was just shrugging it off until I heard from one of my teenage nephews that he was also playing. I didn't want to be the villain and jump on to stop him. I just kept quiet at first until he started playing on his phone during our meal time. I am not sure if it was Mobile Legend because he put the phones volume very low and almost inaudible.
After few instances of that scene on the table, I called his attention to stop on his phone and focus on his meal. I was a bit shocked that he answered me back, "Why? I am still eating."
He called it eating to be putting the spoon to his mouth while still looking at his phone and his one hand pressing on the phone.
I felt disrespected. I didn't expect someone's child to be answering me back like that. I didn't want to just keep quiet. I asked him back, "Why? What is so important on your phone that is more important than your meal?"
He may have sensed my persistence so he stopped. He also stopped doing it during meal time. However, I have a strong hunch that he still does it at night in his room. I say this because I noticed he stays up late and yet rushing for his school projects on the days of submission. I did not tell him my suspicion so as not to put him on spotlight and me being accusing. Instead, I told him to manage his time properly and not to be depending on last minute submissions. He just kept quiet.
From time to time I still notice him cramming for school works. The challenging part is that I cannot check on him every night in his room. As a guardian, I cannot fully stop my nephew. I can only keep reminding him.
So what do I think about metaverses? If one can control the involvement and fully draw the line between virtual and reality then it is okay as part of recreation. However with how I see things that people seem to build their world virtually, I think it is a distraction to the young ones who get hooked into it. As you said, addiction. It is not just for metaverses but the emerging gadgets and social networking in general. These will become a problem not only to the hooked person but also to those around them. Parents and guardians should be relentless in giving pieces of advice against abuse of the technology with the hope that the addict will get to his or her sense soon before irreversible damage is done.