According to The Daily Caller, “Participants don virtual reality helmets and walk on their hands and feet. They are then able to see themselves as a cow in a virtual mirror.”
The next step: these newly christened virtual cows are sent off to slaughter. Welcome to the food chain!
After their experience, subjects log what they eat for the next week to see if their virtual experience translates to real life empathy for cows. Less meat consumptions theoretically points to some sort of virtual epiphany. More meat consumption means “Boy, did I look tasty!”
Researchers hope these experiments can lead to changes in consumer attitudes — such as eating less beef — which may have positive environmental impacts.
Or they could have just put $780,000 towards environmental conservation efforts. Nah, check that: I definitely think some sort of virtual reality cow experiment was the way to go.
For those who find cow life boring, don’t fret: researchers also offer a virtual experience where participants chop down trees. It’s all the fun of doing backbreaking labor without any of the wages!
At least we can finally answer the ancient proverb: if a tree falls in the woods, but it’s just a virtual reality experience funded by taxpayer dollars, does anybody care?