Originally posted on May 31, 2006 @ 10:22 am
AOL is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the AIM buddy list, touting it as “the original social network.”
To commemorate the event, they’ve produced a Flash timeline that illustrates the evolution of AIM from 1989 to today.
In 1989 AOL introduced consumer instant messaging (IM), pioneering a trend that would change the face of online communications. In addition to email, consumers can now send and receive real time text communications, previously available only on private networks.
In 1996 the AOL Buddy List feature launched on the AOL 3.0 service. This AOL innovation revolutionized IM by letting AOL members organize their “buddies” and see who was online and able to receive messages, jump-starting America’s most powerful online community. While aspects of the feature have been copied by others, AOL’s Buddy List network supports the nation’s largest IM community.
It’s amazing to think how far technolgy has come in the past 10+ years. I’ve never been an AOL Internet client but I’ve been using the AOL Instant Messaging service for a long time. I still use it now along with Skype, and Google Talk.
If you’d like to IM with me sometime, contact me and I’ll give you my AOL IM, Skype or Google Talk screen names.