There's something exhilarating about meeting someone new, whether it's in a coffee shop or online. That is, until your new pal pulls a Lyndon Johnson and gets really friendly.
That sort of behavior is pretty common on Chatroulette, where users can "meet" and chat with random people with a click of a mouse. But to cut down on the parade of penises, the service is planning to add image-recognition software that will filter out shots of male genitalia, TechCrunch reports.
Changes could also include a system that flags users who are consistently "nexted" -- skipped past -- presumably because they are exposing themselves or otherwise being disgusting.
TechCrunch also reports that Napster founder Shawn Fanning is working with Chatroulette's founder, Andrey Ternovskiy, in an uncompensated advisory role. It's not clear what Fanning is doing, but his credibility among social media users and investors couldn't hurt.
The story also quotes unnamed "interested investors" who advise that Ternovskiy needs to clean up his site before it is forever linked to creepiness. Only recently has it become easier to cut off offensive users; a New Yorker profile last month noted that Ternovskiy made some changes after Ashton Kutcher berated him about what his stepdaughter had seen on the site.
Chatroulette has long featured the rawest side of humanity -- copulating couples, men taking their pants off, and so on. But it also allows for a potentially rewarding (and potentially lucrative) random human connection, and that's what interests investors.
Although, come to think of it, there might also be a market for software that can quickly scan for penises and not filter them out.
I love the future.
This whole thing was creepy to hear but I get it, pervs need moderation, but that last bit. That just put this article into the creepy zone... ughhhh! Weird!
This is why we can't have nice things anon!
"image-recognition software that will filter out shots of male genitalia"
Why do I get the impression that these same wierdo's will start to dress up their penis in odd costumes to bypass the software?
Kind of like when people started using cyber-slang to bypass forum filters and such.
A penis with a hat is still less penis than you currently see.
it would be sad if they block your face because it looks like a penis
oh man those last few comments are hillarous. i love it.
The part that cracks me up is that not a single mention of breast were in the article. No complaints, no blocking, no mention of them existing at all.
Ok, am I seriously the only one that noticed that both Batman and Obama there are preparing for cybersex?
Obama is already topless, and Batman is wearing a wife-beater, and most likely no pants.
Why do i just see this turning into an art project for some art student, where they end up dressing up their junk as great figures throughout history. This week! Poncho Villa and Abraham Lincoln. That You PopSci I laighed so hard I nearly fell out of my chair.
I'm trying to figure out if "penis" is being used as a code word for something else here. Wouldn't a place called "cat wheel" be more interested in pussys?
This is highly discriminatory. Those of us with faces that bear striking resemblance to penises will no longer be able to participate in the compelling Chatroulette conversations to which we are accustomed, and that is simply UN-AMERICAN.
Lol I thought chat roulette was just a name made up on south park. Didn't realize there was actually something like that. Based on this and south parks puns about mens genitals being on there I am quite certain i will never make a visit.
Got a good laugh from this article.