The Guardian ventures into virtual reality

The media company has announced the creation of a new virtual reality team, which will span both editorial and commercial projects.

6×9: A virtual experience of solitary confinement - a visual representation of the size of a cell in solitary confinement is seen in the Guardian's foyer in Kings Place, London Participants are invited to sit inside the box and watch a VR experience of solitary confinement whilst listening to stories of those previously incarcerated
Alicia Canter

Guardian News & Media has launched a new virtual reality team, which will work across editorial, project management, digital development, design and commercial.

The initiative is intended to further develop the Guardian’s strategy to deepen the collaboration between digital, editorial and design teams, according to the company.

The editorial team is headed up by executive editor, Francesca Panetta. “Virtual reality and interactive content offer an extra dimension to storytelling in journalism and we’re thrilled to have been able to create a team that is truly dedicated to projects of this nature,” she says.

Collaborate with advertisers

Meanwhile, commercial strategy director, Adam Foley, will focus on collaborating with advertisers.

“We’re excited to be able to work with brands to harness this new technology, not only to support some of the exciting projects that we have coming up but also to explore the new possibilities it provides,” says Foley.

“As more people gain access to virtual reality, it becomes more important for media owners and advertisers to invest in their own presence on the platform and bring their brand to life.”

The announcement comes after the Guardian’s first VR project earlier this year – 6×9: a virtual experience of solitary confinement, which placed the viewer inside a US solitary confinement prison cell and highlighted the psychological damage that can result from isolation.

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