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Things Might Get Weird With StrangerBot

Today’s Killer Startup: StrangerBot

 

 

Screen Shot 2015-07-07 at 11.22.34 AM

 

Elevator Pitch:

StrangerBot connects you with strangers to chat.

 

Why It’s A Killer Startup:

Allow me to show my age for a moment while I complain about the internet. With the rise of social networking, so much of the randomness of the internet I grew up with is gone. The people we connect with online are people we either know IRL or we’re already connected with, at least tangentially. Twitter is relatively random still — in comparison to, say, Facebook — but nothing comes close to the random weirdness of the a/s/l AOL chatrooms.

 

Except, maybe, StrangerBot from Telegram.

 

StrangerBot connects you with random people to chat with, like a combination of AOL instant messenger and those old chat rooms. After downloading Telegram (if you don’t have it already), you launch the bot and type /start. The bot connects you with a stranger to chat with, and, if the chat window I have open right now is at all representative of the experience, I can say definitively that I’m having flashbacks to the a/s/l days.

 

I was paired with a guy from Iran who asked my name, age, and location pretty much off the bat. The ask for a picture followed soon thereafter, but when I said: “no, I don’t feel like sharing,” he backed right off of that — a pleasant surprise considering how often those conversations get abusive and weird these days. Also, StrangerBot lets you type /bye and that person disappears, so if shit does get weird, you have an escape route.

 

I expected the conversation to end there, but he pulled a surprising pivot and asked me what I think of Iran. A totally interesting conversation followed, leading me to conclude that StrangerBot may offer a bit more than our old AOL chatrooms usually did. This is definitely an app that I’ll keep using — I’m curious to see who it connects me with.

 

Tweetable:

Miss the randomness of the AOL chatroom days? @StrangerBot will bring you back.

 

Photo Credits

StrangerBotPathDoc/Shutterstock

Author : Emma McGowan

Emma is a proud native of Burlington, Vermont, who has lived in six different countries over the past two years. She's living and loving the global nomad life and writing about technology and startups everywhere she goes. Check out more of her writing about tech on (the more titillating stuff) KinkAndCode.. Follow her on Twitter @MissEmmaMcG.

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