Oovoo is a new video chatting application that is available for Mac and Windows. It allows up to 6 people to have a video chat at the same time in a display that has been compared (by people like me who watched too much TV in their formative years) to the opening credits of Brady Bunch or the grid for Hollywood Squares.
My Oovoo Day was a cleaver marketing strategy to get promotional buzz for the software. The organizers of My Oovoo Day gathered a number of popular bloggers and podcasters and arranged for them to hold a series of chats. You could then sign up for one of up to 5 slots for each chat. As expected the bloggers and podcasters promoted the day. I signed up to chat with John Wall of Marketing Over Coffee, CC Chapman from Managing the Grey (and Accident Hash) and Mitch Joel from Six Pixels of Separation. Because of problems with the My Oovoo Day event, I was only able to get into the chat with John Wall (the email confirmation apparently got eaten by my spam filter and you could neither cancel a registration nor register again to chat with the same person) but these were independent of the Oovoo software.
The event itself was interesting. I had not chatted with John before. The software was still pretty green. I was using a Mac and had to do an update to a new version on the day of the even before anyone could hear me. I crashed at least once so this still seems like Beta software. The audio worked well. The video did not keep up but that seemed to depend on the bandwidth of each user.
Bottom line, Oovoo is worth looking at for a small group video chat. The idea of doing an event like My Ooovoo Day is also worth looking at as a model of how to promote a new product, but… it would be better to wait until the product was a little more ready for prime time.
Chris Christensen is the host of the Amateur Traveler podcast