Instant Messaging

With a not-very-heavy heart at all, I’m removing KIK from my mobile phone today. I was only using it to keep in touch with a couple of people, and even then perhaps once every other week for a two or three word conversation (does that even count as a conversation?).

If you have no idea what “KIK” is, it’s yet another instant messaging application, in the same mould as Facebook Messenger, Google Hangouts, Blackberry Messenger, or WhatsApp. KIK was perhaps unique in that most of the people I used to know at Tumblr had KIK accounts. The key words there were “used to”. Tumblr has been decimated by their removal of comments, and the few people left tend to use the native messaging functions to chat with each other.

I have a long history with instant messaging. I met my other half on Yahoo Messenger. I used to keep in touch with loads of people via Google Talk, Yahoo Messenger, MSN Messenger, and ICQ. Who remembers ICQ?! In the grand history of blind corporate behemoths blundering into the darkness, ICQ must rank right up there – they were the first popular instant messaging platform for the “internet generation”, and yet they ended up being sidelined – a footnote in the wider story. They could have owned instant messaging – because once upon a time they did.

Anyway. Here we are. I’m left with WhatsApp on my phone. At least it’s cross platform, right? I removed the Facebook apps some time ago in order to avoid the never ending pissing competition, and the slings and arrows surrounding family and friends arguing with each other. I sometimes wander into the website during the day, but those moments are increasingly rare. Going back to Facebook now feels like going to eat in McDonalds – you know you shouldn’t go in there, and it feels great at first, but then after you’ve been there for a few minutes you start to feel this creeping disgust with yourself.

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