Chatroulette Makes Connections, Headlines

This article was originally written for The Hartford Informer, February 25th 2010.
In a craze that’s sweeping the world, connects two strangers from around the world into a video chat.
Whereas applications like iChat, AIM and Skype connect you solely to your friends, Chatroulette connects you to anyone, anywhere. With more than 20,000 consistent users online, the range of users you may run into is diverse and varied.
The basic setup has the “stranger” video on top of your video, with a text box much like an AIM message to the side. The user interface is centered on two simple buttons on the top of the screen.
Next and Stop. Next takes you to the next stranger and stop stops the conversation between you and the stranger. With this you are instantly and randomly connected to a world of bizarre people.
The sheer simplicity of the website means that anyone can use it, and anyone does.
In 20 minutes online I spoke to people in California, Austria and Turkey. All three of these conversations were fairly pleasant. Despite the fact that two of the participants were in countries where English isn’t the first language, we could manage a simple conversation over instant message.
Unfortunately these three were an exception, not the rule. Videos flashed by of strange people, someone in a basement, a couple sitting in the dark, someone in bed, someone with the flu (and tissues to prove it), three Asian teenage girls dressed as gangsters, two guys holding a sign that said “show your tits” and the cap off of this terrible experiment a guy masturbating in full view of his camera.
The creator behind this absurd, terrible, yet addicting Web site is 17-year-old Andrey Ternovskiy from Russia. Ternovskiy said in a New York Times Interview that he created the Web site for “fun.”
He continued, “I decided to create a little site for me and my friends where we could connect randomly with other people.” But this hasn’t been an easy task, given the sudden explosion in popularity for the video chat Web site. Ternovskiy had to completely optimize the code as the Web site grew bigger, utilizing seven dedicated servers transmitting seven gigabits of data a second.
In all it’s a unique and terrifying Web site. The name is fitting as you definitely gamble with what you hope to see. Notably, the stranger factor, which allows people to do more absurd things to people they don’t know than they would to people they know, reigns without question.
But beneath the costumes and masks, bizarre dances and what has developed into an Internet meme, “chatroulette,” there is a deeper level to this.
Like the AIM phenomena that seems to have passed involving the Trout and Coho usernames, Chatroulette is a way for total strangers to meet and converse in ways thought impossible before.
While what they may do in front of each other is questionable, the substantive message here is that the world is shrinking and Chatroulette has only exaggerated that movement.

1 comment:

  1. Efe Dekorasyon olarak alanımızda bugüne kadar bitirmiş olduğumuz işlerin yanında, halen taahhüdü altında bulunan işlerle ilgili çalışmalarımıza, sürekli titizlik ve kalite anlayışından ödün vermemeksizin devam etmekteyiz.mantolama ve inşaat işlerinde yapmış olduğumuz çalışmalar ve profesyonelliği en ön planda tutarak verilen itinalı hizmetler sayesinde müşterilerimizin artan güvenini kazanmakta, başarılı işlere imza atmaktayız.