jcharante.com

Hello Talk: First Impressions (Nov '18)

So I've just started with Hello Talk, and right off the bat I'm turned off by the sign up process. It asks for my Region and Native Language. Well, I'm bilingual. I'd actually say my English is probably better than my Spanish, but I have to choose one. Okay fine, I guess I'd choose US & English, but then it says you can't change your Nationality and mother tounge. Okay, then that'd be Peru & Spanish. I guess I'll find more Vietnamese people who want to learn English than who want to learn Spanish, and I don't want anyone to assume that because my Nationality is Peruvian that I'm not a native English speaker, so I'm forced to choose US & English.

So I see they offer a VIP Membership for $5/mo where I can learn up to 3 languages at a time. If I like the app I'll get it because I'd like to add Esperanto, and in 8 months time I'd like to add Chinese. But it doesn't mention anything about adding another mother tongue.

Okay so I have to add a self introduction / bio, and it can be up to 1000 characters. I'm thinking something like

Hello, I'm Johano. I'm a native English & Spanish speaker, and I am concentrating on learning Vietnamese (Tiếng Việt) [Tôi thích bắp chiên giòn!!]. I'm also learning Esperanto, and next year I'm going to start learning Mandarin. I was born in Perú and moved to the US when I was a child, which is why I know both English & Spanish. I'm going to be in Hà Nội during the summer, which is why I'm concentrating on learning Tiếng Việt. I'm a university student studying Computer Science, and my interests include robotics and animal rights activism.

Okay that was 455 characters, not bad.

I love their tutorial with the bot Amy. Okay, now I'm ready to contact strangers... Okay I said high to someone, but then a prompt came up with their interests/tags. How do I add that to my profile?

Okay I guess there's a typhoon in Vietnam? I'm just seeing pictures of destruction (from what I now know was typhoon no. 9, which sounds like a shitty album) and I feel awkward correcting their English (no no, it's "The tree crushed people to death"). But I can tell I'm going to spend a lot of time on Hello Talk.

I've spent another half hour on it, and I keep getting really specific ads. Like ads for "left-handed English speaking teen girls aged 12 to 17 for a typing study.."

I ended up getting the $5/mo membership, if I like it enough I might get the $15/yr special. Since I got the premium membership I was able to input English & Spanish as my "teaching" languages and Vietnamese and Esperanto as my "learning" languages.