, let your opinions be heard

March 21st, 2007 at 12:00 am

And I mean it literally. In a nutshell, is an international global message board where members can record their voice messages on ongoing discussions in the site's online community.

It is quite an interesting community indeed. The main idea was to ″bring people together in an environment of constructive communication.” This Melbourne based company is encouraging people to share their experiences, hobbies, opinions, personal interests, answer to questions, post their own queries, and discuss social, political and even religious topics online. The website uses a one click, web-based sound recorder so users can anytime record and post what they want to say. Moroever, the site has combined their features to podcasting so, every recorded conversation is actually a multi-user podcast.

Chinswing is divided into categories called channels. So far there are nine major channels which contain subcategories or subtopics where people can post and discuss their opinions. Channels include Belief, Religion and Spirituality, Business and Finance, and Society and Culture.

I have been accustomed to reading user opinions in various message boards and online communities that it felt weird, at least at first, to hear users, in their own voice, talk about what they wanted to say. English, of course, is the main language used on the site. Chinswing not only incorporates voice playback and recording, but it allow users to post texts and join in live voice chats.

The site can be a great way for foreigners to practice conversational English. Some even use it for class discussions. The latest ″Are you a news resister” is proof of that. Beyond classroom use, however, I really think the site has a good potential for social networking. Although, what might turn off possible users is a slightly slower sharing interface. Since not all people can speak as fast as they read or type.

Generally, however, the website's user interface: the web pages are quite bright, use of round-cornered boxes are obvious, navigation is simple and quick, all in all a very typical Web 2.0 site. User profiles can be accessed, however, you can't send personal messages directly to other users. Chinswing is currently on private beta. To think that the whole coding and page layout and design was developed and done by one man, Dean Worth.