MSN Messenger: A/S/L? 15 Years/Everyone/Going
Many people will remember MSN, the Justin Bieber generation will know Skype better. I was a big user of Windows MSN messenger throughout early 2000 until around 2006. With MSN messenger you could chat with your friends plus it slowly changed the way it worked with the ability to send photos, documents and other attachments. It even told people what songs you were listening to on Windows Media Player, so it could catch individuals such as my so-called metal loving friend who ended up being a closet Celine Dion and B*Witched fans.
The little green man that represented MSN messenger who sits comfortable in the bottom right of the screen and would light up when contact by a friend will soon by a faded memory. I have very fond memories of MSN messenger, especially during my college years as my friends and I would stay up on group chat arguing about what to do on the group assignment that had to be completed by the next day. Also I met my first ‘girlfriend’ in my mid-teens on MSN from Texas; we kept a very strict relationship for several weeks until I found another girl from Russia to chat too. I was such a player on Windows Live Messenger.
Now the time has come to put Windows Live Messenger to rest, give it its last rites even though in 2009 it had as many as 300 million users. Those numbers came crashing down and it tried to stay alive in 2005 when it came to China but the Chinese favoured their own QQ messenger platform. The final nail in the coffin was in 2012 when Microsoft purchased Skype for a staggering $8.5 billion. Emails were sent out to inform users that they would be given free Skype credit when they moved from MSN Live messenger and over to the new service.
With most internet crazes, they all come to an end. I remember encountering Napster for the first time and thinking how awesome it was when I could download any song I wanted, then I found AskJeeves.com, which was one of the first search engines, then finally I had a MySpace account and thought nothing could replace this idea. However PirateBay, Google and Facebook shot and buried all those platforms as the evolution of the internet continues to grow. What MSN did create, which some may say is a good thing while others may say it slowly killing the English language were terms that are used more commonly today such as “LOL”, “BRB” and of course the old greeting “A/S/L”, which was a way to ask for age, gender and where they are from.
October 31st is the final day and it will be another internet sensation that I grew up with that actually influence and changed the way I interacted with people. Finding young love, general chatting, arguing with strangers and using it to help me achieve my degree, Windows Live Messenger was truly something.
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