For this assignment, I took the risk and tried ChatRoulette. It was my first time to visit the site and I never expect I can communicate with strangers in such an easy way. I was first asked to set my camera and microphone to facilitate the conversations but I chose to be invisible since I don’t want people to look at my face. Then I was asked to press ‘Scan’ to meet people around the world. I got switched a couple of times at first probably because my face wasn’t shown and people don’t want to start conversation with me. Then I came across with this guy from Ohio who was also invisible in the site felt really comfortable in communicating with me through instant messages because both of us don’t have a camera. He described his appearance and asked me to tell him about me. Later he started to disclose a lot about himself.
Then I was switched to another user who zoom his eyeball in front of the camera. That looks really scary and I have no idea why he would do that. I switched again to a 17 year old guy who did funny things with his eyebrow and asking me to give him my number so I can swap pictures with him. Soon after I refused he switched me to a Russian pizza server who was also willing to talk to me even I’m invisible. He talked to me and I typed the messages. He was bored and waiting to work in the morning. He showed me all the liquors around the store and telling me how proud he is to work in that store. Then I was switched to a group of Hispanic women dancing along with music and I felt that I can’t stay in this site anymore so I decided to stop.
My overall experience in this site is not that bad and I discovered the fact that most people who go on this site think that seeing the others’ faces is important to them. I was amazed in how this site work to let people from different parts of the world, time zones, gender and age group meet each other in a very convenient way. It gives you a sense of networking across nations. However, I think that the site is too easily accessible to anyone. This could be risky for people who feel comfortable in disclosing themselves online, especially teenagers who are curious about meeting new friends.