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CNET News.com/Reuters: Net rivals join to pressure AOL to open messaging

Jul 25, 2000, 14:42 (4 Talkback[s])

"Internet rivals clubbed together today to try to force America Online to open up its huge instant messaging system to the outside world. Microsoft's MSN network said it has joined with AT&T, Excite@Home and others to establish a common open standard for instant messaging, which lets Web surfers chat with one another live."

"AOL's messaging network dwarfs all its competitors combined, and it has cited security and privacy concerns for so far declining to let outside networks reach its millions of subscribers--though it says it supports a linkup in principle."

"The new alliance will be called IMUnified--IM stands for instant messaging--and its member companies will set out common specifications by the end of next month to allow their networks to be linked up."

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