A group of Silicon Valley startups is looking to bring the "social" back into social-networking and other popular websites, the New York Times reports. Vivaty is developing 3-D virtual chat rooms users can embed in web pages—including social-networking profiles—and will begin Facebook testing this week. And Meebo’s 2-D chat rooms, launched last year, have proliferated fast.
Facebook, meanwhile, is also planning to introduce live chat, startup TokBox offers live video chat, and a variety of live video-streaming services incorporate chat as well. “A lot of basic human communication needs have been lost in this age of siloed, one-to-one communications,” argued one venture capitalist. “At the end of the day, we are a social species.”