for 23 July 1996. Updated every TUESDAY.

BIG IDEA Parental responsibility meets parental
irresponsibility... on the Web!
25 WORDS <= The babysitter may be unavailable, but
that doesn't mean you can't hit the town.
With babysitter.com, you're only two
clicks away from your little ones.
HARD SELL Would-be parents, be forewarned. There's
one thing they don't tell you in the
delivery room while you're knee-deep in
bloody post-labor euphoria: say goodbye
to Saturday nights. Forget the movies.
For the next eighteen years (at
least), your big screen experience is
gonna be limited to 27". Live
entertainment will include the latest Mr.
Microphone technology. But wait - you're
young. You want to go out, you want to
procreate, you want it all! And oh, those
pesky babysitters. Never available, never
on time. And when one of those pubescent
caregivers does show up, they usually
spend more time giving the hormones a
workout on the couch than keeping an eye
on the bambino. What's a concerned, yet
socially active, parent to do?
Now, through the magic of the Internet,
parents can paint that town red while
making sure Junior is snug in his bed.
With a PDA, a cellular dialup, and
babysitter.com, parents can have that big
night out secure in the knowledge that
they haven't neglected the young ones at
home. Just hang the patented Juniorcam
over the crib, boot up your Pilot, dial
into babysitter.com, and you're gone!
It's so easy! You already spend your day
glued to the baby monitor, now you're
just extending the tether a little
farther. When baby cries, mommy is there
(virtually at least). If the plaintive
wails of your rug-rat hit ballistic mode,
a click of the button activates
babysitter.com's CyberSoothe feature,
which lulls the little bundle back to
sleep. For a total meltdown, one menu
command is all it takes to activate the
CyberSurrogate service, dispatching a
loving caregiver to the house for some
good old TLC.
OVERHEAD Piece of cake. Everything's off-the-shelf.
The Juniorcam home setup consists of a
Connectix camera hooked to a midline Mac
Performa, running Cu-SeeMe via ISDN to the
net. The hardware alone would be a
revenue center. The babysitter.com host
runs reflector software, and routes
CyberSooth via Real Audio (not high
fidelity, but the kid'll never know the
difference.) For the parental remote
unit, port the Cu-SeeMe viewer to a Pilot
with a cellular PC card. CyberSurrogate
dispatches happen via TeleScript.
Playing up the parental responsibility
angle makes strategic partnerships a
cinch. Business-hungry ISPs, now awake to
the fact that they deal in pork bellies,
would clamor for a bundling deal. Baby
Bells, having totally dropped the ball on
marketing ISDN, would cut a sweet deal
for another shot at the home market.
CyberSurrogate services could be
provided by a home protection company,
like Westec or Brinks Home Security. The
$5/hour rent-a-cops might need a day or
two of sensitivity training, and maybe a
refresher course on diapers.

[Pitch Archive]

courtesy of
Red Howard