Newest Virtual Reality Experience From peta2 Promises Close Encounters at University of South Alabama

For Immediate Release:
February 26, 2024

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Mobile, Ala.

To encourage empathy for animals suffering in university laboratories, peta2—part of PETA’s youth division—is visiting the University of South Alabama (USA) today and tomorrow with Abduction, an award-winning virtual reality experience landing on college campuses across the country. In this eerie experience, visitors will enter a mysterious truck containing a mobile virtual reality studio. The students will find themselves seemingly stranded in the desert with a couple of fellow humans, abducted by aliens, taken aboard a spaceship, and subjected to a shocking experience similar to what animals endure in laboratories. They’ll watch as their friends are subjected to painful tests—knowing that they’ll be next.

When:    Monday, February 26, and Tuesday, February 27, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.

Where:   100 Alumni Drive, University of South Alabama, Mobile

Text reads: Imagine having your body left to science-while you're still in it. Abduction arriving at a campus near you this spring

Watch the trailer here. Broadcast-quality footage of the Abduction virtual reality experience is available upon request.

At USA, experimenters injected mice with lethal doses of the flu virus and denied them treatment for two weeks. Some lost more than 20% of their bodyweight before experimenters killed them. In another experiment, staffers put mice into a brightly lit cage—knowing mice usually avoid bright lights—with a dark box at one end. When the mice attempted to hide in the box, experimenters shocked their feet. In another, staffers injected mice with drugs and probed their rectums seven times over two and a half hours, purportedly to study nausea—even though experimenters knew that nausea is difficult to assess in mice because they’re unable to vomit.

“Many students don’t know that on their own college campuses, frightened and confused animals are being psychologically tormented, mutilated, and killed in laboratories, with no way to escape or even understand what’s happening to them,” says peta2 Senior Director Rachelle Owen. “peta2 is on a mission to open young people’s eyes to this cruelty, help students understand what it feels like, and motivate them to join our call for a switch to superior, non-animal research.”

Studies show that 90% of all basic research—most of which involves animals—fails to lead to treatments for humans, which is why peta2 is pushing universities to pivot to sophisticated, human-relevant research methods.

Abduction—which was filmed in VR180 with assistance from the immersive content creation studio Prosper XR—has stopped at nearly 50 other college campuses over the past year, including Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of California–Los Angeles, and the University of Texas at Austin. Abduction won Gold and Audience honors at the 2023 Shorty Impact Awards.

peta2—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—helps young people make meaningful changes for animals in their everyday lives. For more information, please visit or follow the group on TikTok or Instagram.

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