Browser Lets Users Send Self-Destructing Emails at Work

The problem with sharing everything on the internet, is that it can feel so darn permanent. What started with Snapchat, the app that made sending naughty and silly photos seemingly safe, has branched out into a slew of applications that make our internet presence more ephemeral. Enter the latest iteration of erasable online media, OTR (which stands for off the record), a new in-browser application that let users send messages to other computers with a 5 second time limit before they vanish into the cyber atmosphere.

OTR Demo – off the record messaging from Lamplighter Games on Vimeo.

Created by app company Lamplighter Games, OTR was directly inspired by SnapChat (it was originally called ChapSnat when it was presented at a TechCrunch Hackathon last month), but designed for a working environment where communication between colleagues is not always business-related. Kris Minkstein, co-founder of the company with brother Andy, told Bloomberg Businessweek:

We both love using Snapchat, so we thought it would be fun to put Snapchat in the browser. We figured since you’re in front of your computer all day at work that you’re going to end up sending a lot of these photos to probably the guys sitting next to you at your cubicle.

Why Am I Curious?

This application is very much in line with the trend of temporality with online communications whether it is self-destructing tweets or disappearing photos. It seems like more and more people are trying to find some sort of privacy online but it is important to realize that there are many many reports about how those photos that were supposed to have vanished can actually be recovered. So while the promise of ultimate privacy is not there, something is and more and more people getting on board.

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