Typing is so passé. At least this is the impression I have while I'm on dump.fm, a new (often NSFW) image chat room co-founded by Internet Archaeology's Ryder Ripps, Scott Ostler of the publishing framework MIT Exhibit and core social bookmark programmer for Delicious, Tim Baker.

Here users post animated gifs, manipulated and found images and webcam shots as a means of conversing. The site has more than 2,000 registered users and the pace of exchange is frighteningly quick. Post too slowly and you'll be bombarded with glittering images from users reading "Still learning to dump."


Dump.fm's intense level of creative activity matches that of 4chan, an also-NSFW image message board that has birthed memes such as LOLcats, RickRolls and pedobear. It is also a dumping ground for an insane amount of obscenity. Dump.fm hosts a little less of that, though a number of strange meme-like jokes have already come out of the site. The most prevalent has been the constant remixing of a suited man from the stock image search result for "I don't get it." About 800 of these images were removed from dump.fm this month when iStockphoto threatened to sue, though they were circulating on the site again last week.

The idea for the site seems to have already created a sparkle in the eye of other web entrepreneurs. This month, CNET ran an article on canv.as, a site dubbed by the publication as "4chan 2" and created by its founder Christopher Poole. Strangely, the piece (at first) ran with an image of dump.fm. Clearly, the weirdos still confuse the norms.


Paddy Johnson writes Art Fag City, a blog about art's present and its future.