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All about ‘conversation crowdsourcing’

‘Crowd pilot’ iPhone app. — Afp-Relaxnews pic
‘Crowd pilot’ iPhone app. — Afp-Relaxnews pic

NEW YORK, Feb 22 — We’ve all been there... you’re on a first date and all of a sudden you can’t think of a single thing to say. But how would you feel if online strangers could step in and direct you?

A new app called Crowdpilot which lets you ‘crowdsource your conversations’ has been designed exactly for that purpose. The concept allows users to stream live conversations to the web — either to a selected group of contacts or to the whole world — and get assistance and advice.

Designer Lauren McCarthy was inspired to create the app following a social experiment using Amazon’s Mechanical Turk platform in which she went on dates and live-streamed the footage online. Workers were paid to tell her what to say, how to act, interpret non-verbal signals and generally guide her through myriad social situations.

Released this week, Crowdpilot functions via MTurk, Facebook or an open site online. The app is compatible with iOS software.

It can be called upon in tricky family situations, on dates or even in professional meetings. Of course, the flip side is that it also allows you to observe and direct others in their everyday lives... creepy, or ingenious? — Afp-Relaxnews

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