Day 1 of Airtime: Instant Reaction
Airtime launched today. Playing on it this afternoon has reminded me of my experience with Highlight.
My instant reaction: what a great (short term) way to network with folks from the tech community!
When Highlight launched, I found myself in private conversations with “famous” VCs, otherwise-difficult-to-access tech reporters, and execs at hot startups. The social layer gave us a fallback topic (“How long have you known Jack?”). I don't use Highlight anymore, but that early adoption turned out to be a helpful rolodex builder.
I'm seeing the same thing today on Airtime. In less than 20 minutes, I've met a few co-founders, a tech reporter, and a well-known VC. Despite being peripherally connected to these kinds of folks by virtue of being inside the tech industry, it's often tough to actually meet them when I'm nose-to-the-grindstone at Yelp.
As for the long-term potential of the product itself, I'm bullish. Something was heavily addictive about Chatroulette and I was hoping that Andrey Ternovskiy would've iterated to correct some of the glaring problems early on.
That said, the reduction of anonymity does make the entire experience feel a little duller – like I'm meeting a friend-of-friend in a bathroom line at a party rather than randomly colliding with people I would've otherwise never known.