Tag Archives | Chat Roulette

The Musical Side of Chat Roulette

Photo: Chat Roulette frame from concert at Fillmore

Photo: Chat Roulette still frame from The Fillmore

Chat Roulette has had a growing success since the beginning of the year. Chat Roulette pairs users with random video chatters from around the world.

The video chat site has revealed its “dark side” with a plethora of naked men exhibiting themselves every fourteen pairings or so. But since the site’s creation in January the public have found more intriguing uses, such as practicing different languages or using it as a performance space.

After being compared to Merton, a Chat Roulette user, who would wait on the site to improve songs about the people he was paired with, Ben Folds signed on to Chat Roulette during his concerts at the Fillmore in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Projecting the website on a large screen behind him for the audience to see, Ben Folds creates songs on his piano for each person he connects with.… Read the rest

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Chatroulette Developing Genital Recognition Algorithm

chatroulette-at-your-own-riskChatroulette is struggling with users’ constantly exposing themselves, which drives non-creeps away from the site. Thus they are mounting a campaign to develop technology that can identify and block human genitals — it’s this era’s Space Race. Techcrunch reports:

Russian website Chatroulette, founded by Andrey Ternovskiy, is perhaps most well known as a place to watch men expose their genitals.

Can Chatroulette become something more? Look for feature changes soon that will try to send all those penises to the background. The service may add software that can quickly scan video to determine if a penis is being shown. And users that are consistently quickly skipped over (presumably because they are exposing themselves or otherwise being disgusting) can be flagged as well. With those and other changes Chatroulette may be able to put people who actually want to talk to each other in touch much more often.

And that’s where real growth might happen.

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The Boy Behind Chat Roulette

I recently posted a story about the Internet insanity that is Chat Roulette. The good old New York Times, always a little late to the party, actually does a nice follow up by interviewing the man behind the madness:

…The lingering mystery, though, was who was behind the site. The question was answered on Saturday when Andrey Ternovskiy responded to the questions we sent to an e-mail address on Chatroulette. Mr. Ternovskiy said he was a 17-year-old high school student in Moscow.

“I was not sure whether I should tell the world who I am mainly because of the fact that I am under age. Now I think that it would be better to reveal myself,” Mr. Ternovskiy wrote.

I asked Mr. Ternovskiy about the origin of the idea for ChatRoulette, how he manages the technical challenges of running the site, whether he viewed it as a business, and about the way some people were using Chatroulette in, as he put it, “some not very nice ways.” Here are his e-mailed responses, slightly edited and condensed:

I created this project for fun.

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Welcome to the Weirdest New Internet Pastime: Chat Roulette

Fast Company's Cliff Kuang reports:
Welcome to Chat Roulette. It's simple: The site pairs you with a random videochat partner. You can click "next" any time, or stay with your current pairing.

Then things start tripping into psychedelic performance-art territory. As a friend says, "It's the Internet. UNFILTERED." The big lure is basically seeing something strange--or doing something so strange that you blow your partner's mind.

You might see people in horrifying masks dancing around. Chinese users seem to love virtual high fives. One person's shtick is a puppet who makes like a caring psychotherapist and will sit with you for hours. A friend reports a man holding up a sign that said, "Assroll?"--and promptly rolling over backwards, naked. (Nudity is hard to avoid.)

Also, challenges are big--successively crazier things. You might start by eating a page of your favorite book. You might end by calling your mother and screaming that you're being murdered. Think of YouTube, with even more exhibitionism because everything is live and nothing is being recorded.

This appears to be the place where all the freaks trawling 4chan--a bulletin board better known for inventing LOL Cats and Rick Rolling--have migrated their insanity. And it's insanely addictive--basically like a slot machine where instead of cherries, you're hoping for the strangest that humanity has to offer...

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