iChatFinder.com links iChat AV users

iChatFinder.com launched earlier this month. It's a new Web service aimed at users of Apple's iChat AV software, who want to find new people to talk with. The service incorporates a search engine and groups users based on interests, and users can also filter by personal pursuits, age, occupation, gender, location and other factors.

iChat AV was introduced in June during the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC). It's a new version of iChat -- Apple's instant messaging software -- currently in public beta. iChat AV will be included with Apple's forthcoming OS X "Panther" release and will also be available for sale to users of Mac OS X 10.2. It combines text-based instant messaging with support for voice and video as well. iChat AV's release corresponded with Apple shipping the iSight, a FireWire-based video camera designed specifically for video conferencing.

iChatFinder.com uses e-mail validation to positively identify new users; once you're verified, screen names of other members become available to you through the service. iChatFinder.com also uses a visual indicator to tell you whether other iChatFinder.com members are online. You can also use the service's own "Privacy Screen" to selectively block other users based on various factors.

The service also reviews photos of members to make sure they're appropriate before posting them online, and will help users edit photos to make them the correct size. The service will scan profiles and member pages to block offensive content, too.

iChatFinder.com has been online for less than three weeks, according to its developers, but the service already has more than 1,000 members hailing from 37 countries, ranging in age from 18 (the minimum allowed) to 75.

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