5 Comments

Summary:

Chatroulette introduced new features this week, but the extensive media coverage of the new Channelroulette and Localroulette offerings inevitably led to tons of penis jokes. So what can the site do to succeed? How can it possibly make money, and what needs to be fixed first?

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Chatroulette made it back into the media spotlight this week with the launch of their Localroulette and Chanelroulette offerings, on which NewTeeVee reported first on Wednesday. Local and themed channels could help the site win back audiences it lost in recent months and possibly even deal with its penis problem, but it’s still unclear how the site hopes to eventually monetize its offering.

That shouldn’t stop us from speculating about Chatroulette’s future, which is why we came up with a little weekend poll. We want to know: What do you think Chatroulette needs to succeed? As always, feel free to sound off in the comments!

Related content on GigaOm Pro (sub req’d): Report: The Consumer Video Chat Market, 2010–2015

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  1. The problem is that Chatroulette is now known for gay male exhibitionists and that’s now who it attracts. Jokes and parodies by South Park and other comedians merely reaffirm this public image and “help” it attract even more of these perverts.

    I voted for a penis filter but how could that be done? Banning anyone that shows their penis? Penisroulette … err, I mean … Chatroulette go that route and you’re simply initiating a whack-a-mole situation. The perverts will simply get a new account and continue their behavior until they’re banned again … get a new account … banned … new account … into infinity. Given this, I wish I could now change my vote to “Nothing. Chatroulette is doomed.”

  2. To be fair, I miss an important option in the poll: Nothing. Chatroulette is just fine.

    I hope newteevee has no ambitions of becoming a church. C’mon guys, whether you like it or not, the internet and the basic instinct at joined at the hip (pun intended). Youtube might be a saintly clean, but that is why there is youporn.

    Yes, we could all wish for a squeaky-clean clean version of chatrt. And perhaps it’ll happen someday. But honestly, ask yourself what would you do if there was a such a clean chatrt? How often would you want to chat something of deep significance with a total stranger, and that too, over video? Would you rather not walk into a bar and meet people for real? Would you rather not talk to the people that you already know (and can use Gtalk or yahoo IM or one of the several other IM clients out there)?

    Chatrt serves a unique market segment – one of personal (social?) discovery. And this could be translated to a business model. But then, it is perfectly possible that it stays as is. Might be doomed in the eyes of a church, but with a fan following, nevertheless.

    1. Scott Jensen FTM Monday, July 19, 2010

      Wow. I never thought I’d see someone say males showing their penises in a video chatroom was “just fine.” What’s next? An endorsement of NAMBLA?

      1. Scott, you got it all wrong.

        The poll was not about male exhibitionists. It was about how you’d fix chatrt. Not it’s users. Secondly, you are not coerced into going there. Thirdly, if you want to run a church, please do so by all means. But you cannot stop others from doing what they like as long as their likes are not causing you trouble. Live and let live.

        And yes, I don’t like chatrt either, but I respect the freedom of expression that it embodies. I will not visit that site (for exactly the same reasons that piss you off), but I will support it in principle.

        And btw, I don’t know what NAMBLA is. And am not eager to google it.

  3. Scott Jensen Monday, July 19, 2010

    FTM,

    We’re talking about how to save Chatroulette. It is failing. Declining in users everyday. And the biggest thing sinking it below the waves is male exhibitionists jacking off on camera to anyone that sees them. And that includes children. Think pedophiles. Those are people who Chatroulette people have publicly said over and over again they did not create it for.

    You trying to bring in freedom of expression into this discussion misses the point.

    And as a libertarian atheist, I find it humorous you accusing me of starting any religion/church or censoring speech.

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