Home iGoogle Video Chat Threatens Shirtless Blogosphere

iGoogle Video Chat Threatens Shirtless Blogosphere

While tax season is always a scramble, one of the best perks of being self-employed is the fact that you can generally arrive to the office / living room in your pajamas. Think about all the blogs you read on a regular basis. Now imagine those people in their underwear, because that’s honestly how the foremost technology bloggers are dressed as they deliver you the latest news. But video chat threatens to unsettle this wonderful world of pants-less utopia. This past weekend, Google announced the launch of iGoogle voice and video chat.

While Skype was one of the first large communities to incorporate video chat, the company has always positioned itself as a VoIP solution for long-distance international phone calls etc. Meanwhile Google’s applications have always been positioned as personal email and office solutions. Even after launching office-related features like screen sharing, Skype’s video chat is still marketed with the overseas grandparent angle in mind. A crisp video of a grandchild’s first steps is featured on Skype’s main video page alongside links to web cam-related merchandise. However, when Gmail’s video chat feature arrived, it wasn’t positioned towards grandparents or overseas friends. It was presented as an everyday lifestyle-related product, and it meant that for launch week, 150 million monthly users would habitually open their email and face the threat of the pre-coffee video ping.

Now with iGoogle video chat, the threat of the unwanted video chat is even more constant. For many iGoogle users, opening the main page is similar to opening a morning newspaper. Imagine opening your news feeds and having your boss or mother-in-law call you when you least expect it. Egad! We’ll have to keep our homes clean, brush our hair and put on respectable clothing. And what about home office productivity? All of those precious morning minutes we spent mentally prepping for phone interviews will now be spent picking out an appropriate shirt.

If you’re the kind of upstanding citizen that gets dressed before 10:00 am, install the iGoogle voice and video chat plug in and try it out. But if you’re a nudist, self-employed hermit or hopeless slob, consider holding off until the community has established guidelines for etiquette.

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