"Like anything remotely useful in technology, IM has been
chopped up into different messaging protocols, each one a
proprietary format that allows users to communicate only within a
closed system. Not that this is a big setback. ICQ, at last count,
had 77 million users, so it's not like you would be hurting to find
at least one person to talk to. Still, there are limitations to how
many people you can talk to. If you have an AOL Instant Messenger
client, you are limited to chatting with AOL users. Ditto with MSN
and Yahoo. And all of these protocols save ICQ are simply out of
reach for the Linux community."
"This is where products like imici Messenger come in. Dubbed a
universal IM client, imici Messenger allows users to connect to and
electronically chat with fellow users in up to five proprietary
formats: AOL, MSN, Yahoo, ICQ, and imici's own format...."
"Perhaps the biggest drawback to this application for Linux
users is the need to already be a member of an IM service in order
to use. Because I am not a member of AOL (nor do I plan to be
before I draw my last breath), I cannot use Messenger to chat with
anyone. Linux users will find this especially daunting, since the
lack of Linux clients for these services (save ICQ and AIM) makes
it unlikely they would be members of these varied IM services to
begin with. Messenger does give users a reason to start using other
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