If anyone of you has tried Omegle.com, you would have realized the fun in it! It is one helluva site. I won't elaborate on the details of the founder, working etc as all those are trivial details. I want to elaborate on some of the chats that I have had in this site.
Since Omegle is a completely anonymous chat site that pairs you up with some random user each time you log-in, I have assumed many identities on it. Most of the times I am from India, but I have assumed identities of a Englishman, a person from Boston, a Spaniard, an Aussie and even a Japanese! In fact, I even identified myself as a girl a few times, just to see the reaction of the male species (and believe me, a man, when I say this - MEN ARE PIGS).
The chats were interesting in the sense that I could learn many new things from them. One main thing was their perception about India, and I was not surprised that most of them were actually "surprised" that an Indian was chatting with them, because I was asked "You are really an Indian, or a person located in India?" It was, as if, there should not be any Indians on the Internet!
I can tell you some interesting things I learnt. Here are they, illustrated as points:
1) There is a very famous show that is currently running on Brazilian TV, called "Caminho Das Indias" or "Way to the Indies", an inter-caste (Brahmin and Dalit) love story set in Rajasthan in India. I got this information from almost every Brazilian to chat with me on Omegle! This show is quite popular, with almost 24 lakh Brazilians tuning in to see the show each time it airs on TV! I was told by one girl, "You live in a country rich in culture." I also learnt that Samba is prevalent is just some parts of Brazil and the country is not a all-out Samba-land as our perceptions are. Of course their carnivals are still awesome!
2) Australia has a lot of issues with their censorship laws and broadband connection speed and costs. One of then is related to video games. A 18-year old kid was telling me that it's annoying that any video game deemed too violent, has any kind of drugs in it etc. can't be classified as MA15+ and thus gets banned. It seems a game was banned there, not because of the incredible amount of gore which surprisingly passed under MA15+, but the item you used to heal yourself was called 'Morphine' in the menu, and hence the game was banned for drug use! All that the game-makers did was change the name to 'Health Pack' and went to get it classified again. This time it passed easily! Shit!
It seems that there was a movement to try and get an R18+ rating, and they asked some high up guy in each state to write a list of pros and cons of the rating. The guy who represents Western Australia, who's been against it for a long time refused to do so, hence the process has been halted.
There's also a lot of crap going on with the Internet there as well, with the govt. trying to bring in a mandatory censorship program directly to the ISP, so your Internet gets censored from your service provider which not only slows everything down, but they can also ban everyone in Australia from any site they want! Although their broadband speed goes upto 1500kbps, it's expensive, and there unlimited just means that if you go over your cap instead of paying for your extra downloads, you just get slowed down to around 64kbps - Shitty!
The kid made a statement which summed the entire situation - "I'm nerd and a gamer, and I just happen to be in the worst country for both!"
3) I met a person named Jackson Oliviera from North Carolina (USA). He is a web-developer and is waiting from the right idea to click. You can see his personal portfolio site here (it is still under the process of construction) and also another site that he developed here. currently he is working for a cyber-cafe. You can check his details at the sites in case you want to take his help with anything.
4) I happened to chat with a woman from Finland, aged 30. You will get a lot of people from Finland to chat with in case you chat in the afternoon (IST). It seems a lot of IRC channels there have spread this link around and people just log in to check it out. this woman was in a live-in relationship, and had a small baby girl aged 2. We had a neat talk about arranged marriages (she happened to know that most of the marriages in India were arranged marriages and asked me how it was possible for two people to marry without loving each other). It seems most of the women in Finland make their first baby in their late twenties or early thirties. The only reason she wants to get married is because in case anything happens to her, at least her husband would be able to get all her things, unlike her daughter who is legally too young to use her possessions in a fair manner.
I actually argued at the concept of dating being stupid, as to many choices actually confuses a person who finally settles for something less better than what he would have got with lesser choices - something called as "The Paradox of Choice", in this book by Barry Schwartz. Of course Barry talked about the numerous choices we had as shoppers, but I extended the same analogy to dating too. You can see a small 20-minute talk by him here, which will explain the concept in detail.
5) I met another Finnish girl, who saw "Bride and Prejudice" and liked Aishwarya's dancing in it.
6) Another interesting chap I met was Daan, a Electrical Engineer from Holland. He was pretty cool to talk to. It was a general chat, we talked about his engineering, which includes both bachelors and masters together in one sitting of 5 years. However, most of the students take 6-7 years to complete it, because, in his words "Well, after the first year, about 60% of the students go away to do the same study, but one grade lower. But the thing I don't like is, every new technology has makes the load of study larger and larger!" I think he was referring to students repeating a year or two just to keep themselves abreast of the latest technologies. In my understanding of his statement, their syllabus is revised almost every year! And the students take interest to keep themselves updated! Awesome!
7) I also happened to meet a Texan student, Drew, who was pretty doped up and was very patient in his chats. He was a cool guy and we shared too many interests - we both loved watching movies and also the very same TV shows like "Scrubs", "Southpark", "American Dad", "The Colbert Report", "Family Guy", "Two and a Half Men" etc. We also happened to be fans of Hugh Jackman. I liked his chatting attitude and never saw a hint of racism in him. I guess stereotyping is wrong anywhere. He is waiting for the release of "Where the Wild Things Are", whose trailer can be seen here. It happens to be the movie adaptation of a book that is just ten sentences long! Amazing!
Some chap from the UK kept telling some weird jokes, some of which were quite good. For example:
- When I went to the USA and got off the plane I saw a sign which said "Restrooms". I thought "Wow, a room where you rest after a plane journey!"
- A representative Of McDonalds went to a church and went to the vicar and said "We will give you $10,000 if you change the Lords Prayer to "Give Us Today Our Daily Hamburger". The vicar said, "I'm sorry sir, but I can't do that". So the McDonalds person said, "Ok, I will give you $100 million if you change the Lords Prayer to "Give Us Today Our Daily Hamburger". So, the vicar got out his cell phone as rang the Pope and said, "Good News - I have made the Church $100 million. The Bad News is - We Have To Break Our Deal With Wonder Bread"!!!
Ciao for now! In case Omegle is down, you can check back after an hour or two and it will be back! I just hope that the site runs well, and is never closed down! Happy Chatting!