The Men of Airtime, Looking for Love

Photograph by Joel Sartore/National Geographic/Getty Images

The first time I hit the “Talk to Someone” button on Airtime, the widely hyped, celebrity-endorsed new video-chat service, the image that popped up on my screen was two blinding squares of light. As my eyes adjusted, I realized they were the windows of an apartment somewhere. A couple of seconds later, an enormous ear moved into the screen, followed by a forehead—and then that half of my screen went blank as the man on the other end of the connection hit the “next” button and I was thrown back into the digital hopper, to be matched with another chance conversational partner.

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