IRC-Galleria

IRC-Galleria Website

IRC-Galleria is the largest WWW-based virtual community in Finland. It was founded in December 2000 by Tomi Lintelä as a photo gallery for the Finnish users of Internet Relay Chat. As for February 2006, IRC-galleria boasts of over 302,000 registered users and over 3,600,000 images. About 85% of the users are active users who use the service on a weekly or daily basis. However, only about 20% of the users have identified themselves as actual users of IRC.

Technology

Despite all the features, IRC-Galleria is basically a photo gallery and it is not possible to have a user account without at least one accepted image. The maximum number of visible images per user is 60 (only for VIP-users), and the so-called default image must contain the face of the user.

The communication in IRC-Galleria is based on short messages, comments, each of which is associated with either a picture or a community. Each user can be a member of at most 40 communities. Some of the communities are named after IRC channels, and joining them requires IRC-based identification. Comments are only visible to those who are logged in.

IRC-Galleria is now maintained and developed by Dynamoid Oy, a company founded solely for the sake of IRC-Galleria. The service is financed with banner advertising, SMS-based services, T-shirts and optional VIP privileges which can be bought with SMS.

Problems

The unwillingness of the administrators of IRC-Galleria to exclude non-IRC-users has caused some schism, driving a few users to found their own alternative gallery services with a mandatory IRC-based registration. The administrators responded by introducing some features which aim at the minimization of the biggest problems related to the non-IRC-users.

The non-IRC-users registered in IRC-Galleria are sometimes ironically called galleriairkkaajat (gallery IRCers) due to the fact that many of them frequently refer to IRC-Galleria with the acronym IRC without necessarily even having a clue what the actual IRC is.

IRC-Galleria is now officially open for anyone who is over 12 years old and speaks Finnish.


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IRC-Galleria is now officially open for anyone who is over 12 years old and speaks Finnish. It is also known for the staggering number of paedophiles pretending to be fourteen year old girls and the fourteen year old girls who are in turn ready to strip on web-cam for money or simply to get more people to join their user groups. The non-IRC-users registered in IRC-Galleria are sometimes ironically called galleriairkkaajat (gallery IRCers) due to the fact that many of them frequently refer to IRC-Galleria with the acronym IRC without necessarily even having a clue what the actual IRC is. A major problem in Swedish schools are young girls constantly occupy the library and computer room computers to sit and endlessly chat or message with their friends, thus impeding schoolwork and serious activities. The administrators responded by introducing some features which aim at the minimization of the biggest problems related to the non-IRC-users. It is despised by most people that are not members and is considered to be a waste of time. The unwillingness of the administrators of IRC-Galleria to exclude non-IRC-users has caused some schism, driving a few users to found their own alternative gallery services with a mandatory IRC-based registration. It quickly became very popular with Swedish teenagers, and according to its own figures, it now has about 2 million members, including 80% of Swedes aged 12-24.

The service is financed with banner advertising, SMS-based services, T-shirts and optional VIP privileges which can be bought with SMS. Having been around since 1996, Lunarstorm officially launched January 1, 2000 with venture capital backing. IRC-Galleria is now maintained and developed by Dynamoid Oy, a company founded solely for the sake of IRC-Galleria. The predecessor to Lunarstorm was called "StajlPlejs". Comments are only visible to those who are logged in. LunarStorm is a virtual community website operated by a company called LunarWorks in Varberg, Sweden. Some of the communities are named after IRC channels, and joining them requires IRC-based identification.

Each user can be a member of at most 40 communities. The communication in IRC-Galleria is based on short messages, comments, each of which is associated with either a picture or a community. The maximum number of visible images per user is 60 (only for VIP-users), and the so-called default image must contain the face of the user. Despite all the features, IRC-Galleria is basically a photo gallery and it is not possible to have a user account without at least one accepted image.

However, only about 20% of the users have identified themselves as actual users of IRC. About 85% of the users are active users who use the service on a weekly or daily basis. As for February 2006, IRC-galleria boasts of over 302,000 registered users and over 3,600,000 images. It was founded in December 2000 by Tomi Lintelä as a photo gallery for the Finnish users of Internet Relay Chat.

IRC-Galleria is the largest WWW-based virtual community in Finland.

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