Some of the most popular 3D chat experiences are IMVU and Second Life (though they extend far beyond just chat).
The users in a particular chat room are generally connected via a shared internet or other similar connection, and chat rooms exist catering for a wide range of subjects.
New technology has enabled the use of file sharing and webcam to be included in some programs. The first online chat system was called Talkomatic, created by Doug Brown and David R.
A chat room is a Web site, part of a Web site, or part of an online service such as America Online, that provides a venue for communities of users with a common interest to communicate in real time.
Forums and discussion groups, in comparison, allow users to post messages but don't have the capacity for interactive messaging.
Woolley in 1973 on the PLATO System at the University of Illinois.
It offered several channels, each of which could accommodate up to five people, with messages appearing on all users' screens character-by-character as they were typed.
The primary use of a chat room is to share information via text with a group of other users.
Generally speaking, the ability to converse with multiple people in the same conversation differentiates chat rooms from instant messaging programs, which are more typically designed for one-to-one communication.
These are characterized by using a graphic representation of the user, an avatar (virtualing elements such as games (in particular massively multiplayer online games) and educational material most often developed by individual site owners, who in general are simply more advanced users of the systems.
The most popular environments, such as The Palace, also allow users to create or build their own spaces.
Because chat room messages are spontaneous and instantly visible, there is a potential for abuse, which may or may not be intentional.