Friday, February 20, 2009


My internet presence is a little out of control these days. I have a Facebook page, a (completely abandoned and unwanted) MySpace account, a Twitter...whatever it is you have on Twitter, GChat, iChat for work, and this brand spanky-new blog. Even though I have waaaaaay too much connectivity, I wish for one more...

I miss AIM.

My dad always made sure that our family was an early-adapter to all technological improvements of the 1990s. We were the first people I knew to have a DVD player - which I consider a risky move, seeing as it could have easily gone the way of BetaMax. So, I was hip to AOL before AOL was hip. Ya dig? I've had the same screenname since I was 11 years old, which explains the emotional attachment I have with those 9 alphanumeric characters. Like a stage name, it is my World Wide Web name.

Actually - and this could will come across as lame - one of my best friends in middle school was someone from Georgia I met in an AOL theater chatroom. First of all: leave me alone, it was middle school and my glasses/braces/frizzy hair combination was quite the obstacle to overcome. Secondly, no, he was not a 45 year old man that wanted me to do naughty things. This was in the beginning of AOL - people hadn't figured out you could use the internet like that yet. I loved talking to him because he wasn't involved in any of my 7th grade drama. We're now friends on Facebook and have NOTHING in common, hah. Our political views are on complete opposite ends of the spectrum and while he had big dreams of being an actor in NYC someday, he is now the eternal Southern Frat-Guy that would probably get killed in the first 20minutes of Scary Movie 6.

But these days, AIM is a thing of the past. I have barely anyone on my buddy list because people don't really exchange their screennames any more. I don't really talk to the people that ARE on there, either. When I first moved to DC two summers ago, I looked at my very short "DC People" section and thought, "Soon this list won't be so depressingly small." But it's pretty much the same, while my Gchat can be overwhelming.

Lately, my AIM won't recognize that my screenname is supposed to be in lowercase letters. Every time I sign on, I have to go to EDIT--> Screen Name Format and re-type it. It drives me nuts. It makes me angry that the program doesn't remember me from log-in to log-in. And it's made me re-evaluate my use of AIM. Why am I even logging in? Almost everyone I'd want to chat with is on Gchat.

So it's not really AIM itself that I'm hesitant to give up - it's the Away Message. I view Gchat Status more like a Facebook update. I don't feel comfortable logging onto Gchat and walking away, which was my M.O. for AIM. And I do really love away messages. I've always seen them as mini-advertisements for myself. Considering the fact that I went to school to be a copywriter and now work in print production, it's one of the few chances I have to practice my craft.

I guess it's time to grow up, though. Goodbye, AIM, it's been a long friendship. But you've changed, too - you're all about playing games and you have even forgotten how I spell my name. I think it's finally over between us.


Adam said...

Text messages made AIM go the way of the Dodo Bird. I use it from time to time but my Blackberry has taken over as my "short chat" modus operandi.

not eb said...
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