Gadgets rule our lives in today’s technology-driven world. We are so in sync with gadgets and devices that we technically have the world at our fingertips! Whether reaching out to known people or strangers, the process has become easier because of technology, shrinking the world to a more accessible size where information and communication are just a click away. We call, text, or chat throughout the day in spite of our busy schedules. Our contacts now live at two addresses, one in the real world and one in the Cloud!
While our known friends are all a click’s distance away, technology opens doors to the wide world of strangers, as well. As it is often said, a stranger is just another friend waiting to be met. The difference between meeting a stranger and making a friend might be the length of time it takes to break the ice and start communicating with each other. Most people nowadays are “tech savvy”, either digital natives or well-adapted to the realities of a digital world. We keep the most updated devices handy and chatting can even be a refreshing activity after a long day of work (or as a break from monotony during work for that matter). The more apps there are employing voice chat, the easier it gets.
Behaviorally, we humans might find it difficult to meet strangers in a face-to-face setting, but when it comes to meeting people virtually, it’s easy to shed that inhibition. An advantage of virtual tools like video chat is that we never have to meet a person twice if we don’t want to! Pairing a face to a voice with video chat makes it more personal and easier to connect. Gone are the days when remaining anonymous had its charms. Now, people want to see who they are talking to and with whom they share these interests. While chatting, whether by video, audio, or text, we generally stick to people we know, but chatting with strangers can also be very exciting. Strangers can take us by surprise, talking about things that are close to our interests and choices in new and exciting ways. Remember, video chats also mean that we can see the person, thereby making interactions more credible than anonymous, faceless interactions.
If you have free time, the wish to meet more new people with exciting stories to tell, and the desire to share your stories with strangers, video chat is your answer. Before you start, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
When video chatting with surprising strangers online:
- Opt for the most reliable and recommended chat platforms
With the growth of technology and more and more people learning to code, there’s certainly no dearth of chat platforms. There are both free and paid chat services to choose from, but before going for a random free service, remember that safety comes at a cost and our safety is in our own hands. Popular, paid, and recommended platforms are always better, safer, and offer stronger cybersecurity than free ones. Remember, no service is ever really free. Apart from the regular popular platforms, there are some highly-recommended chat platforms like CamFrog that offer superior quality and safety for the most seamless and safe experience of meeting strangers on video chat.
- Check your connection, bandwidth and device beforehand
Remember, video chat needs a more stable and powerful network connection than our usual phone lines. In order to have a seamless and uninterrupted video chat, check your connection speed and update it if necessary. It is also important to review your data bandwidth to ensure you’re not on a limited plan that might throw you offline in the middle of a very interesting conversation. Last but not least, check your device settings to ensure clear audio and video quality. If you’ve reviewed all these settings, your video chatting will be more fun and meaningful.
- Look fresh and presentable
While poetically we might say that beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, in a more practical world looks do matter. That doesn’t mean you have to be a supermodel. However, the way we present ourselves when we are on video chat will determine who we end up talking to. For someone to approach us for a chat or reciprocate a request, it is essential that we look fresh and presentable. Once conversation kicks off, the true beauty of our personalities is sure to come out. Until then, we need to be able to sustain the interest of the person we want to talk to. Be careful about your background as well; no one wants to see your used coffee mugs!
When we start chatting with a stranger on video chat, we need to remember that the person on the other end is chatting with a stranger because he is she is interested in us in some way. This could be because of our looks, because of our intellect, or for another hidden reason. Regardless, this is going to be revealed only when a proper conversation starts. So when a stranger who is trying to know us better asks questions that might differ from the textbook introductory questions, we need to have an open mind and continue the conversation in an intellectually stimulating way.
- Be ready to accept being rejected
How often in life does it happen that we want something that either does not belong to us or cannot be available to us? Truly, this is a pretty common phenomenon. In the virtual world, like in the real world, we aren’t always able to continue the conversation with someone we want to talk to. Sometimes, we might get rejected for our looks, our inhibitions, or for not having an open mind. Other times, we might simply not get along with the person on the other side. This might be especially shocking while on a video chat if somebody closes the chat window abruptly. If and when this happens, be ready to accept it gracefully and move on.
- Have a cheerful disposition
Strangers coming to talk to others over a virtual medium hope to find like-minded people and unwind from the daily grind. It is helpful to have a joyful and cheery personality so that strangers are not reluctant to approach you. We need to ask ourselves if we would approach a morose and sad looking person ourselves if we had to. The answer will probably be a “no,” especially over someone looking bright and engaged. If we want people to be attracted to our profile for a chat, we need to follow the same principle. A smiling, cheerful profile attracts far more interesting chat invites than common ones.
Think before talking
Everyone loves to talk, be it over phone, text, or video chat. However, you must be careful about what you say, even when online. Many times, when you are really excited or curious, you end up speaking before thinking, which could prove to be disastrous. Remember, people on chat platforms have endless choices of whom to start a conversation with, so if we really are excited about something or someone and that person has just started a conversation with us, the first thing that we need to do is think about what the person might be expecting to hear from us.
As we have always known, practice makes perfect. So be it a stage show, presentation, lecture, or video conversation, we need to practice, especially if we want to be successful over via technology such as video chat. We might all be camera-conscious, but getting a still shot is very different from being on a moving camera. The angle needs to be right, the camera needs to be focused on the best features of the face, and the voice needs to be clearly audible to have a proper meaningful conversation. It might be helpful to practice video chats with some friends before you start chatting with strangers.
Every time we buy a new device, they seem to come with more new features. Many smartphones, phablets, and tablets nowadays come pre-built with major social networking sites like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or WhatsApp. While these are all secure and recommended social networking sites, they do not necessarily cater specifically to chat services. These are more open forums where people network and share thoughts and activities with friends. However, if you are more keen on having one on one video chat with surprising strangers, these might not be your true destination. There are a host of chat services that offer forums as well as private chat rooms. While some are free, most are paid and hence secure. Even with paid services, some basic chat rooms come free to familiarize people with the features before they can choose to opt for paid services.
We all like to have a good conversation and if that conversation puts a face to a name and is motivating, interesting, or helps form a connection with a new person, it leaves us feeling good. We all look through different chat rooms until we reach one where we find someone interesting to chat with. In doing so, we must always be aware of our audience and how our demeanor and opinions might be received. As responsible adults, it is our duty to ensure that unchartered territories are avoided or moderated sensibly if they ever reach a state of conflict.
In your search for a chat service that offers good quality chat with smart, interesting strangers, you might find sites like Camfrog.com to be of great value.
Why is Camfrog a great video chatting service?
Camfrog is not just a chat service but a video conferencing platform that’s popular and easy to use. Here are some of the special features that make it successful:
- Videoconferencing – Camfrog is essentially a video-conferencing service that offers both one-on-one and group video conferencing. Connected through video chat rooms, users can access more than one chat room and chat with more than one member within a group, simultaneously.
- Live Directory: Having its own video servers and requiring members to register, Camfrog maintains a live directory of all its users. Any registered user can then select from this list who they want to chat with, based on their profile and status notifications. The instant messaging service can be used to reach out to people before commencing video chat.
- Free and Paid versions: Camfrog offers both free and paid services. While the free software has the basic features and functions, Camfrog Pro (the paid service) is updated with a number of features including user location, multi-video viewing, and more.
- File sharing: Camfrog Pro also allows users to send or receive photos, audio, or video snapshots. An updated version allows maximum resolution possible on media, depending on the camera being used.
- Available on all platforms – Be it Windows, Android, or iOS, Camfrog chat services are available on any device that runs on these three platforms. Whether you’re using a smartphone, tablet, laptop or a stationary desktop computer, just log in to your registered Camfrog account and switch on your video chat services.
Scientists believe that humans interact with strangers, driven by the survival theory which states that in our primal bid to interact and mate outside our gene pools, we like to reach out to people who do not belong to our circle. There is a reason why strangers are found enhance our personalities, after all! A study by Dr. Gillian M Sandstrom, psychologist and senior lecturer, Department of Psychology, University of Essex, Colchester, England, and her associates shows that overall we underestimate the degree by which a stranger will affect us during initial conversations, and vice versa. She adds that, more often than not, it is a pleasant experience!
Elizabeth Dunn, Professor of Psychology, University of British Columbia, shared from her research that interacting with strangers can actually enhance our social abilities and improve our social lives. What better way of reaching out than using the world wide web and video technology to meet more surprising strangers virtually and keep expanding ourselves and our worlds.