MTV VMAs 2022 & The Metaverse: Is This The Controversial Future Of Music Awards?

Have you ever attended a concert in the metaverse? If you haven’t, then it’s probably time to do so. The metaverse is quickly becoming mainstream, as cemented by the MTV VMA’s “Best Metaverse Performance” category and Eminem and Snoop Dogg’s Bored Ape Yacht Club-inspired performance.

But how will this year’s MTV VMAs and the metaverse impact the entertainment industry? And is it time to accept that the metaverse is a core part of the future of the music industry?

MTV VMAs; Credit – Getty Images

Table of Contents

    About the MTV VMA’s “Best Metaverse Performance” Category

    This year, the MTV VMAs music awards introduced a new category, which turned out to be the “Best Metaverse Performance” category. The nominees included a veritable list of artists spanning across genres and countries, namely Ariana Grande, BLACKPINK, Charli XCX, Justin Bieber, Twenty One Pilots, and eventual winners BLACKPINK.


    Each artist was nominated because of a concert they set up in the metaverse. Sure – they aren’t the only artists who performed in the metaverse. However, they’re big names that helped bring their majority Millennial and Gen Z fans closer to the concept of the metaverse.


    In addition to the introduction of this category, the MTV VMAs and the metaverse became even more inextricably linked this year. This is because the infamous award show announced its first-ever metaverse experience on Roblox. The VMA Experience on Roblox included three interactive games. In addition, it allowed players to increase their chance to vote for their favourite metaverse performance by collecting MTV-logo tokens while playing VMA music awards-related games.

    Eminem and Snoop Dogg’s unique performance

    In the 2022 MTV music awards, Eminem and Snoop Dogg also delivered a phygital (physical and digital) performance of their track “From The D 2 The LBC.” The legendary rappers teamed up with Yuga Labs, best known for the Bored Ape Yacht Club, and presented a mind-bending performance inspired by the Bored Ape’s Otherside metaverse.


    Eminem and Snoop Dogg’s “From The D 2 The LBC”‘s music video is also inspired by the Bored Ape Yacht Club. In fact, the music video, like their VMA performance, alternates between live shots of Eminem and Snoop Dogg, their avatars and Bored Apes.


    Eminem and Snoop Dogg’s phygital performance


    The MTV VMAs and the Metaverse: The 2022 edition’s legacy

    While the viewership of music awards shows is declining, virtual concerts are on the incline. Therefore, it makes perfect sense that a musical juggernaut like MTV wants to grab a slice of the metaverse pie.


    According to several surveys, 61% of Millennials are interested in attending a virtual concert. So do 56% of Gen Zers. In addition, about 2 in 5 adults are interested in having an avatar in the metaverse. 31% said they would buy virtual wearables for their avatar.


    If this isn’t enough evidence, the sheer number of attendees virtual concerts are attracting speaks for itself. Travis Scott’s in-game Fortnite tour brought over 27 million concurrent players to the game, while Lil Nas X’s Roblox gathered 33 million views.


    As the MTV VMAs struggle to remain relevant and attract new audiences, it comes as no surprise that MTV included the metaverse to revamp. Only time will tell whether this will have an impact on other award shows. One thing is for sure – given the rise of the metaverse’s popularity, we surely won’t be surprised!


    Janelle knows a thing or two about the music industry. Having been involved in the industry since the age of 13, she's now involved in a variety of music-related projects and is always keen to share industry tips 'n' tricks with fellow musicians.