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MaskedChat Allows Random, Anonymous Video Roulettes

April 13, 2015

ChatRoulette, the video-chat “blind date” service that allows people to randomly start conversations with others around the world, is getting some competition. However, there’s a twist: the upstart offering allows users to hide themselves using masks.

Appropriately dubbed MaskedChat, the service has been released by the startup incubator MyHeadquarter.com. It’s a WebRTC-based app that supports native video and overlays of other content.

It truly supports hidden identities; users can meet strangers on their computer or mobile phone while wearing a digital mask, which allows them to look like their favorite idol or character. They can also make a custom mask by uploading a picture. Further, people can also mask their voice and arrange for a fake ambient sound to appear somewhere the person is not.

"Besides a random chat that will connect you with random online users, you can also create and share a private channel to chat with your existing friends," a company spokesperson said.

An obvious application for this is drive-by amateur porn, but the company thinks that it has addressed the problem with a piece of code that can recognize if a mask is in the frame—if not, the video won’t start.

Users can remove the masks if they choose, which allows a live video without the facial requirement to start that allows for showing card tricks, dances and other forms of entertainment that predecessor ChatRoulette became initially famous for.

“The creators emphasize, however, that they aim for youngsters around to world to make new friends and entertain each other,” the spokesperson said. “For that reason users can build a list of favorites (friend list) and filter the demographics of their opponents.”

Edited by Dominick Sorrentino

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