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Overexposure on Chatroulette

Having first flirted with the random video chatting site Chatroulette back in December 09, Zeitgeist has watched with interest as different parties have innovated in their use of the functionality provided by 17 year old Russian Andrey Ternovskiy.

The honour of being the first brand to base a marketing campaign on Chatroulette goes to French Connection who, as part of their ‘The Man, The Woman‘ campaign, offered men (and then women after they received complaints) the chance to win a £250 French Connection voucher by arranging a date on the site.

Clearly not all brands will want to be associated with the random and uncontrolled nature of the site, where there is a slightly greater chance of seeing an unsightly erection than in a 1960’s architects casebook, but such a risque experience appealed to the brand that is arguably best know for its FCUK campaign.

The random nature of the site offers users an element of excitement as the user never knows who they will connect with next, which creates a ‘just one more’ click mindset before they finally turn off.

One reason you might want to stay on is that you could find yourself serenaded, either by a man in his bedroom or by Ben Folds in front of 2,000 people. After which, you’ll find yourself on YouTube viewed by millions.

Depending on what gets them goings, the risk of such exposure may encourage or indeed discourage people from wearing underwear in front of their webcams.

If the intimacy of a one to one chat being shared online grates with the initial idea behind the site, as we mentioned last week, the layer of anonymity is further eroded by Chatroulettemap.com which shows the location of each user.

Zeitgeist watches and waits, fully and respectably dressed, to see whether Chatroulette is here to stay or will just be an amusing memory in a few months time.

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