February 26, 2001
11:37 PM   Subscribe

Have you been getting those annoying ICQ ad banners like me? Well, it appears that AOL/TimeWarner has been testing out ads in the ICQ IM interface. The backlash has begun. Here's a site that'll tell you how to get rid of some of the banners. My friend's also gone ahead and taken the liberty to hack the ICQ dll that causes the ads to appear and has full instructions on how to remove the ads permanently from your ICQ. Hurry and grab those dll's before he gets slashdotted!
posted by PWA_BadBoy (14 comments total)
I haven't found icq's ads nearly as annoying as the ones in the AIM client, so I'll be leaving them in. Of course, if they asked for money to get an ad free version, I'd happily do that.
posted by mathowie at 11:55 PM on February 26, 2001

Well, I'm sure AOL/TimeWarner doesn't want this kind of thing happening, and I think you'll probably see some reference to this in their EULA for ICQ, but the ads really, really bug me. As a longtime user of ICQ, it's a pain in the ass to have to see that banner that's 1/3 the size of the message box itself. What's worse is that the software is AUTO-UPDATING itself and patching itself up without me even knowing. The old pre-AOL ICQ would never have pulled something like that (AFAIK).....

Anyway, there's me flipping the bird to big ol' Corporate America.
posted by PWA_BadBoy at 12:07 AM on February 27, 2001

And the problem is they'll never ask for money for ICQ or else people would just stop using it. It's been talked about for ages, but there's just simply too many IM clients out there for people to get too attached to ICQ. Granted, I've gotten pretty used to ICQ's interface and it'd be hard to reset my contact list (which is probably over 300 people long)... so who knows.

At some point, IM is just going to become as standard as e-mail... but we're not quite there yet.
posted by PWA_BadBoy at 12:09 AM on February 27, 2001

Hopefully text messaging from mobile phones will be more like a ICQ / IM type thing. With 3rd Generation phones, this shouldn't be too difficult, I hope.

One pain in the ass is that some of my friends use Yahoo IM and some use MSN IM and some use ICQ. A standard would be nice, so I could put contacts from MSN into ICQ, for example. AFAIK, there isn't any way to do this at the moment.
posted by ajbattrick at 2:15 AM on February 27, 2001

Actually, I think there is...
posted by Optamystic at 2:24 AM on February 27, 2001

There's also this, though I haven't tried it out personally. I found it through /usr/bin/girl just last night.
posted by crushed at 3:04 AM on February 27, 2001

I never bothered upgrading after the 99a version because I didn't see any reason to; usually I'm gung-ho to upgrade things, but none of the newer features were things I cared about. All I really need are IM, the ability to send links and files, and the chat feature anyway, so I put off upgrading for a while -- I may put it off completely now!
posted by lia at 3:40 AM on February 27, 2001

Other IM (ICQ, AIM, MSN Messenger, Yahoo and so on) clones to try out: Trillian, OMNI, MyCQ and Miranda...
posted by kush at 8:17 AM on February 27, 2001

Does anyone know if any of those multi-network clients work reliably over HTTP Proxy? I just tried installing Odigo (thanks to Optamystic's link) and while their SmartDownload works fine over HTTP Proxy, the client itself chokes.

(I have a request in their support area, we'll see how they respond)

Personal experience getting the clients working would be preferable, and if it doesn't do Y! and ICQ, there's little point for me.
posted by cCranium at 8:49 AM on February 27, 2001

If you have a sufficiently flexible firewall, it should be possible to block the ads but not anything else.
posted by Steven Den Beste at 8:51 AM on February 27, 2001

At some point, IM is just going to become as standard as e-mail... but we're not quite there yet.

Oh god. Please no. And if such a hideous thing should come to pass, PLEASE let it be based on a decentralized open protocol! I don't want to be left out of the digital future, but there is no way I am going to install some big whoffly graphical ad-laden corporate spam-crap application whose sole purpose is to allow anyone to send me mini-emails at any time. I already HAVE an email client.

posted by Mars Saxman at 12:08 PM on February 27, 2001

I'm currently using WinJab. (More general Jabber info at JabberCentral.) It supports AIM, ICQ, MSNM, YIM, etc. if you use the right server, and overall I'm pretty happy with it. It's open source, though, and, true to my experience, it isn't always reliable, but it's gotten much better lately, to the point where I feel I can really reccomend it with enthusiasm. Which I'm doing.
posted by Lirp at 4:44 PM on February 27, 2001

Add Imici to the list of multi-protocol clients. I've used it or WinJab to keep up with people across assorted systems.

ICQ started bugging me a long time ago when they started adding every feature in the book to their system and ended up with a bloated buggy program. Who needs a web server in their IM client? ICQ has one, along with lots of other unnecessary features. While the benefits of every system being a server (the whole P to P thing) has been demonstrated, I'm quite content to set one up myself, thank you.

Even with gobs of memory and Hz to spare, I want a small simple IM program that I don't mind running all the time.
posted by mutagen at 9:46 PM on February 27, 2001

Blugh. Odigo responded to my request for support e-mail by cutting and pasting their help files.

Y!'s small and clean and available through the web browser, which is pretty handy.
posted by cCranium at 5:27 AM on February 28, 2001

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