Nope! - No Video!
Every phone has a video camera, almost every computer has one as well, but why are we so camera-shy. Yes there is YouTube, and blogs and Video posts and Webinars and on and on, but why is the average person so hesitant to get on their web cam.
And as you may guess I’ve several ideas about why people shy away from the spotlight. it’s one thing to post a stupid video on YouTube, just to be intentionally funny. But Remember back to when you were a kid and someone handed you a microphone. Either one on a PA system, or on a tape recorder and told you “It’s on!” What was your first reaction. Remarkably most people make an intentional stupid noise or voice or whatever. The point being that they take the opportunity to look stupid intentionally. Thereby having an out if anyone might rate them as being “goofy”! The answer is that “I was trying to!” And that’s your alibi.
If you intended to be “weird” then you succeeded. However, who ever says anything intelligent or of worth? No one. Because we have a fear of failure.
That is one major reason that people do not use video chat casually, because they don’t want to be seen as trying their best to be “professional”, “normal” call it what you will. But they are afraid of looking bad to others.
That’s why it’s easier to act in character than to try to act in a normal role. because your character is just that, a character that you have made up, a “Caricature” of the character you portray.
So to bring it back around, most people just don’t like to video chat. Associates, friends, family, anyone. Oh, well there is the porn industry, but again, they are playing a role so they have a scapegoat. And they are ,in their minds, providing a service.
And the new pastime of “Chat Roulette” , which could actually be fun, but I would imagine it’s for the uninhibited. But to us normal folk who have always been told that the camera adds 20 lbs we are terrified.
We all wanted a Video phone 20 years ago, and now that we have them, do the Grand kids talk to the grand parents….mine don’t and both have the capability. But neither have the time or find some way to avoid it. You can pick up the phone looking anyway you want and with a slight grimace you can put on a happy face (in your voice) even if you have strep and 102 temp. But some calls on a video phone and immediately your chat goes to “away” like that isn’t just a total diss!
I’ve a few friends that will chat any time, they are guys and I’ve known them for years. One hit me on Ichat and was leaning into his camera real close. (Unusual for this VP of almost every Large internet company I could name) And Giddy! Turns out he was on Ichat on an Airbus flight from LA that had inflight WiFi. He was smiling and whispering, I said “speak up” and he Shooshed me — then held his laptop up so I could see the 50 rows of people behind him on a Wide body plane with isles R&L. I saw a few people look up, one waved and then he brought it back down and we talked about the speed and clarity.
But for the most part I think most of us would rather not be on stage at the whim of anyone with a mouse who clicks on us. I my self don’t mind. If you want to video chat then add me to your iChat or AIM using email@example.com. Although you might have to email me and let me know you want to chat because I don’t keep it open as often as I should, unless I want to reach out or am working on a project and collaborating with someone.
And speaking of that, why is that so difficult and or expensive. In Ichat you can talk, text and share your screen, even let the other person drive from their desk on your screen. It’s great for working on projects or showing someone how to do something on-screen and the voice works the entire time. But being able to go cross-platform requires an advanced IEEE degree. Yes I can do it, but I won’t go into what that takes here.
I’d like to hear why you don’t (or why you do) embrace video chat/interactivity.