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Caution! VR Is Going Viral: Cases of Ocular Herpes are Spreading from "Try VR" Booths at Conventions

Tester beware! VR devices at public conventions may contain more than new technology...

Virtual Reality headsets are becoming increasingly available, and the prospective applications for video games have certainly seen some interesting developments. However, those wishing to test the new technology at public conventions may be doing so at their own risk -- stories are starting to surface of ocular herpes being spread through the headsets.

The news comes from a series of Twitter DMs that passed between a few devs. The following conversation was posted by YouTuber Drift0r on his Twitter account, who made the devs involved anonymous to protect their privacy.

The messages above speak for themselves. Someone's already contracted it, it's spreading, and it's gross.

Given the anonymous nature of the post, we can't 100% verify that this is legit until someone comes forward with more evidence. But we have to admit...it's not that far-fetched.

Almost all major gaming conventions nowadays have Try VR booths with all three major devices (Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR) frequently on display. With thousands of people passing through the booths on a daily basis and trying on the headsets, it's little surprise that such infections can spread.

We caution anyone traveling to these conventions to utilize these devices at their own risk. If you believe you have a transmissible condition, please consider avoiding these booths for the benefit of others. Further information on ocular herpes including warning signs and symptoms is readily available.

With luck, it'll be this news that spreads rather than the infections -- and VR booths will start taking further precautions for disinfecting headsets soon. Because it's all fun and games...until someone gets herpes. 

Published Oct. 24th 2016

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