Creative platforms to help you socialise virtually
The current state of the world isn’t far from being an episode of Charlie Brookers Black Mirror. With social distancing and social curbing as the norm, staying in has become, by law – the new going out. The result has been people scrambling to stay connected with each other through a variety of digital platforms. It’s a good time to embrace your inner geek and dust of your gaming consoles and if that’s not your cup of tea attend/crash a ‘House Party’ with a few friends and some new ones – either way, the options are endless. We’ve gathered some of our favourite virtual pass times that are not only keeping our spirits up but our social interactions as well.
With 2 million downloads worldwide last week alone, it’s safe to say Houseparty is the app of the moment. Similar to Zoom, the app allows you to have an online party with up to eight people but unlike your ordinary video chatting app Houseparty lets your friends crash other friends calls, uninvited. The silly, entertaining but a far safer version of Chatroulette also offers a variety of games including Heads up, trivia and cards against humanity.
If anyone’s got our back during these times of high stress and anxiety it’s Netflix! Now with its cheerfully titled google chrome extension – Netflix party; groups of friends can watch series and films together while maintaining distance. With the help of synchronised video playback and group chat options you and your friends – or significant other can schedule movie nights or discuss Jessica’s baby voice as you binge watch Love is Blind together.
Do you love sharing and listening to music? Plug.dj is the perfect platform for music enthusiasts. The interactive website allows visitors to join a party, be a DJ or just listen. The app enables you and your friends to join the same party, swap tunes and que music videos in a master list. It’s not much for talking, but who needs conversation when you’ve got good music anyway?
Direct from artists’ homes and private spaces, Boiler Room after cancelling 40 of their upcoming shows has started a live series under lockdown. The broadcasts will stream directly from the artist straight to the audience thus adhering to the precautionary measures taken for Ccovid-19. A great way to not only remain connected while isolated, Boiler Room is also encouraging supporting underground and independent musicians by giving the audience and option to donate funds to the Global Foodbanking network. The last stream featured Mall Grab and the next one will take place on the 28th and will feature Joe Armon-Jones and Fatima.
Most of us are familiar with Masterclass through YouTube ads featuring the likes of Timberland and Margaret Atwood. The educational platform, now more than ever has become one of the easiest ways to connect with people who are thriving in their respective industries. From cooking classes with Gordron Ramsay, Film making with Martin Scorsese, social distance learning has never been so exciting. The platform offers an array of subjects to choose from where students can discuss their course and give each other feedback as well. It’s not free but it’s definitely a worthy distraction.
The anti-social stigma of video gaming fans has never been less true. Providing us with a location to meet up, chat and share experiences together that don’t necessarily have to involve blowing stuff up the world of gaming is buzzing now more than ever. From old school games such as Mario Kart, now known as Mario Kart Tour to the more anarchy inspired ones such as Fortnite: Battle Royale – great to keep anxiety at bay, there’s plenty to choose from. Even Pokémon Go has adapted to a more indoor friendly version. While classics such as Ticket to ride, Boggle and words with friends make for great distractions. Pick squad mode, go solo or play with hundreds online – the options are endless.
If any community has come together during these times, it’s the workout community. Fitness instructors and hard-core gym bodies are now sat at home unable to go about their normal routines, the result has been videos across platforms such as Instagram live and zoom. Trainers are finding alternative ways to get people moving – which might be necessary now more than ever. CorePower Yoga is offering live streams of classes so you can practice your downward dogs straight from the living room. While AARMY has closed down their training centres and switched to free boot camp style online classes through Instagram. Rumble Boxings, Noah Neiman also has a bag-free workout. Whether it’s planking on the pouffe, chair supported push-ups or free weights using bottles, there’s plenty of content for you to choose from.