February 2010


By now you may have heard of Chatroulette (chat – roulette). It’s a phenomenon whereby you can “meet” a stranger via a random webcam connection. There are no profiles to fill out, no registration requirements, no ways to predict who might be on the other end. For some, it’s a heart-racing thrill to see who appears in the video box. Driven by chance, mystery, voyeurism, and that odd human behavior of having to look at things like a car wreck, it picques curiosity and takes people-watching to a whole new level.

On the other hand, as you can imagine, it’s also a petri dish of every aspect of humanity – on one occasion, I gave it a whirl with a friend and we saw a person with a Venetian mask, another who had his webcam pointed at his chest so his face wasn’t visible, and another, well, we’ll leave that to your imagination.

Nonetheless, the utter simplicity of the navigation makes this site easy and addictive. Find a weirdo, click next. Find somebody interesting, chat away.

The psychological motivations of this site fascinate me. Like watching a scary movie or riding a roller coaster, Chatroulette provides that rush of adrenalin – not knowing what to expect and not being able to control it. And with an expectation of adventure – based in the safety of your own room – you can simply click “Next” to swiftly proceed to the next stranger. For some, it’s definitely the cat’s meow.

Posted via web from Kathy’s posterous

This is an awesome idea! Social media meets running meets marketing meets doing good for others. 

Join Nike in helping rebuild Haiti after the earthquake by committing your Nike+ runs to the effort. By doing so, you will be helping Nike raise up to $100,000 as part of their overall commitment to donate $500,000 to the efforts in Haiti. $1 will be donated for every mile/kilometer run with a goal of reaching 100,000 miles or 160,000 kilometers. For more info visit www.nike.com/haiti.

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I’m a member of Nike+ and while I had occasional struggles with the device, the website and social aspects of the site have never let me down.  To me, Nike+ does a great job of feeding into our natural competitive instincts and adds a touch of humor as well.  Additionally, their strategies of employing social media are chock full of inspirational ideas.  Users can create their own groups and challenges to spurn on more running (and more purchases of the Nike+ device and membership in the site), individual members can establish goals for themselves (resulting in recurrent visits and stickiness) and there’s even integrated chat called “Trash Talk” which allows members to broadcast their thoughts and opinions to the group.

This latest endeavor – Help for Haiti – is another brilliant execution by Nike.  It’s a call to action to run more with the Nike+ device because not only will it benefit yourself, but will benefit those in need in Haiti.  I’ve been feeling especially lazy after returning from Hawaii (plus, I’m still nursing my pulled muscle) but this encourages me to get out there as soon as possible.  Every mile counts.  For me.  And for them.

Posted via web from Kathy’s posterous