AOL IM was down today for a bit. I found out because I got an instant message saying “Is AIM down for you?” IMs to friends confirmed that AIM went down for a while this afternoon.
In addition to AIM, I use Jabber, an open standard IM protocol that lets anyone run a server. That means there’s no centralized server to go down. It’s something to consider, especially if you use your IM for business.
Want to get started with Jabber? If you have your own domain name, ask your hosting provider if they do Jabber hosting too. I know Dreamhost and Zettai both provide free Jabber hosting (I am not currently a customer of either, but have been happy with both for web hosting).
If you don’t have your own domain name, you can download a Jabber client (iChat in OS X 10.4 supports Jabber out of the box, I prefer Adium
and I hear good things about GAIM from Windows users) and sign up for an account on Jabber.org or another open server.
The point is, you can be self-sufficient with your instant messaging and it isn’t difficult. Go on and try something new.
If you’ve tried Jabber in the past and decided it wasn’t for you, go on and add all the people @gmail.com to your contact list. Imagine how surprised they’ll be to see your Jabber ID show up, it might just convince them that they don’t need to be locked into a single company’s IM network.
Thus concludes today’s commons propaganda.