What Ever Happened to ICQ?

gcarter

Posts: 104   +40
Ah ICQ... how I miss thee. I remember first subscribing in the late nineties as I had just moved to a new city and was looking to make some new contacts on the way.

One of the best features (ironically would be considered one of the most perverse nowadays) was the people search function. You could literally narrow down your search to sex, country, city, online status!

I remember having 10+ chat windows all open at the same time, as one endeavoured to make new friends and acquaintances in a strange new city!

If I hadn't used ICQ back in the day, I wouldn't have met the person who eventually introduced me to my future wife :)
 

Julio Franco

Posts: 8,764   +1,652
Staff member
Users were issued a unique User Identification Number, or UIN, upon registration. This number (I somehow still remember mine by heart some 20 years later)
This... my old UIN 5431887, call me up ;)
 

psycros

Posts: 3,386   +3,865
UINs are great because you don't have to play the Facebook guessing game of "will the real whoever please stand up". Also (at least back then) ICQ didn't try to triangulate every detail of your private life and market you to death. Most of my friends switched to MSN Messenger almost as soon as it was introduced so I didn't spend much time on ICQ.
 

Digitalzone

Posts: 172   +102
In my country there was quick switch from ICQ to FB chat. Sadly. I remember having alternative clients like Miranda, which had transparency and looked really great.
What really crippled chatting was move from open protocols to proprietaty. You could have FB chat in other clients, not anymore.
 

SpatulaCity

Posts: 17   +14
Download software from a Russian company on a Russian domain, no thanks. I'm sure Russian programmers are excellent at what they do but I feel there's too much of a risk if there being some kind of nefarious back door included.
 

Igrecman

Posts: 300   +180
I remember when it came out, it was working with Windows 3.11
So it wasn't totally depending on the new popularity of Windows 95.
 

cerealkeller

Posts: 6   +1
ICQ, I used it to hook up with girls in high school. Of course I used to use FB to hook up more recently. The internet has gotten me laid plenty of times, thanks internet!
 
I can't relate to other countries, but in Belgium the first mayor downfall came when Trillian loomed. You could reach people that weren’t on ICQ, but on other IM-suppliers. So I stopped logging in on my direct ICQ-account. On Trillian, you could see that, over here, hardly no one was on Yahoo Messenger, but hey, everybody was using MSN.

The popular rise of MSN was the second mayor blow for ICQ. MSN was the more popular tool, while ICQ was perceived as something for the more ‘techy’ or ‘nerdy’ people.

The deadblow was Facebook.

WhatsApp reminds me a bit of the old IM’s.
 
I can't relate to other countries, but in Belgium the first mayor downfall came when Trillian loomed. You could reach people that weren’t on ICQ, but on other IM-suppliers. So I stopped logging in on my direct ICQ-account. On Trillian, you could see that, over here, hardly no one was on Yahoo Messenger, but hey, everybody was using MSN. apkjunky

The deadblow was Facebook.

WhatsApp reminds me a bit of the old IM’s.

The popular rise of MSN was the second mayor blow for ICQ. MSN was the more popular tool, while ICQ was perceived as something for the more ‘techy’ or ‘nerdy’ people.
 

0dium

Posts: 195   +233
Decided to download it a few months ago. Completely different thing now, no reason to even look at it.
 

Squid Surprise

Posts: 3,913   +2,986
Wow... it still has all of my contacts... but you need to enter a phone number "by law"... I'd like to know whose law that is...