Advice on How to Communicate with Foreigners in Video Chat
In the modern world, video chats have become an integral part of our day-to-day communication with people from all over the world. Either for chatting with your beloved one halfway around the world, or trying to make new foreign friends, there are certain pieces of advice to follow during any video chat. Some of these we will discuss in this article to ensure that you have the best experience talking to a foreigner online.
Generally speaking, when communicating with a foreigner, especially with an absolute stranger, one has to account for possible cultural differences and language barriers to make the introduction as smooth as possible. An ice-breaker or a good joke suitable to the situation may help to lighten the atmosphere and contribute to a more pleasant start of the conversation. As regards video chats, though, there are quite a few more peculiar things to take into account.
Video Chat Etiquette
Whether you use Skype or Google Hangout or some other program, a video call is almost like being in a meeting in person — almost. The word “etiquette” in this very case has nothing to do with haughty Victorians with their curling mustaches, but rather represents some basics on how to show your respect to a person on the other side of a monitor. Make sure you follow the rules below for any kind of a video chat call, especially with complete strangers in our often-remote, always-connected age.
Key principles before starting a video chat with foreigners:
- set and test your technology: to make a good impression of a tech-savvy person, ensure that everything works properly and you do not have to call for a few times before things work out in a right way;
- dress according to the occasion: and sometimes this can even mean to dress up a bit for cases when a person you are talking with is of special interest to you. This applies even more to male than female chat users, as outer experience is often neglected by the former;
- set up your background: try to keep pin-up girls, 1990s magic eye posters, and ransom notes written in blood out of the picture;
- arrange lightning: a key thing to think about is lighting: people would prefer not to speak to a cave-dwelling troll, but if overhead light is too bright, you will look like a zombie.
With everything being set up, try to relax, behave naturally and be polite. In front of you is just a person, a human-being with his or her own fears which may be of no difference to yours. So, breathe, smile and do not be afraid to start a conversation. Remember, you want to keep it as breezy and enjoyable as possible in a given conditions and circumstances. In the course of the conversation it is nice when you are asking interesting follow-up questions, and answer all of such addressed to you.