Chatroulette Offers More Than Many Bargained For
First there was Myspace, then Facebook and Twitter. Now a new social internet website is generating a lot of buzz. The website allows users with webcams to meet complete strangers.
It's the latest online craze, chatroulette.com, a website that allows users with webcams to connect with each other randomly and instantly.
As an experiment, TV20 producer Emily Gagnon went on the site to find out what it was like and from the beginning, we found some obscene images. Some images were too graphic to air.
Even though the site warns it doesn't tolerate indecent pictures, we found several sexual images and our chats quickly turned racy.
Detective John Madsen, with the Internet Crimes against Children Taskforce, says sites like these need to be heavily monitored.
"I think it's an example of just another thing parents need to be cognisant of," Madsen said. "I think there is a lot of places on the internet that kids can get themselves in trouble, offer too much personal info or put themselves in a position where they get exposed to materials that may not be age appropriate."
Madsen says this isn't a game and admits it's hard to control what happens in cyberspace.
"It is unlikely that we can monitor the activity as it occurs," Madsen said. "If parents are able to capture the activity, it still may be difficult. It definitely seems like it is something that parents should be mindful of, perhaps this is not something for their children."
Madsen warns it ultimately comes down to the parents to monitor what happens when their children are online.
Chatroulette was created by a 17-year-old Russian student last year. The site typically gets about 20,000 users at any given time.
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