Has Facebook Chat become essential to your everyday life?

15Jun08

It’s been almost 2 months since the ASL crew introduced our readers to the good, the bad and the ugly sides of Facebook Chat. Now that it has spread to the profiles of every Facebook user, we want to know if it has taken off for any of you as a primary method of communication with colleagues, friends, clients, family, etc? Or has it faded into the background, emerging only every so often as an annoyance? To be honest, I rarely use the feature, although I have kept my chat client on just in case someone feels the urge to contact me. I have to say these occasions seldom happen, and I’ve noticed that if a friend is on iChat and Facebook, we always opt to talk via AIM instead. Go figure.

I imagine that Facebook has been faced with an interesting marketing dilemma with the introduction of Facebook Chat. How do they market it? How do they sway the minds of already dedicated AIM, iChat, Skype, Google Chat, Meebo, MSN, etc. users to make the switch.

Another challenge with this is convincing users to stay on the site for long periods of time. In my experience there has been sort of a stigma with this, being “caught” on Facebook all day. Not in the sense of being caught slacking off in the work place, but by being seen on the site by your peers multiple times throughout the day. Almost like the obsessive photo updater who constantly clogs your Newsfeed, and you ask yourself, “doesn’t he have anything better to do?” But in that sense, has Facebook become a guilty pleasure for some?

-Sarah Hutton

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5 Responses to “Has Facebook Chat become essential to your everyday life?”

  1. I’ve been contacted a handful of times through FB Chat by people who I suppose didn’t think to look at my profile to see any of my screennames. I suppose it was the easy of seeing my name pop up. I haven’t used it to contact anyone, mainly because I don’t have a reason to contact anyone who isn’t already in my AIM. But maybe someday it’ll be useful but right now it’s just another method to get a hold of me that you can add to the list.

  2. I have used Facebook Chat once or twice, and typically I prefer to appear off line. I guess I just prefer not to be contacted by the people I kinda, sorta stalk on Facebook. For me, Facebook is a way of keeping in touch with people without actually having to interact with them in real time. I can see what people are up to, who they hang out with, what they like, etc… but I don’t really have to ask them for the information. Chatting with them would involve a more active form of interaction, which to me is unnatural to Facebook and I really don’t like. I guess that in a way, when I’m on Facebook looking at people’s profiles I’m being social in a lazy and almost semi-anti-social way, if that makes any sense at all.

  3. 3 Paul McLenaghan

    I use it a lot. I find it much simpler to chat via FB than having multiple chat windows open for AIM, yahoo, etc.

  4. I don’t spend enough time on facebook to be stalked by anyone, but actually I think facebook’s chat is a kind of “random” chat. If you’re so lucky to be at the same time there… but if I want to be in touch with a buddy of mine, I have skype or gtalk.
    ;)

  5. As if it weren’t easy to stalk people already?! Facebook chat has opened up a whole new can of worms when it comes to the “I’m online now” that used to be on your profile.

    On the plus side – I like that it’s multi-platform so if I’m on someone else’s computer, I don’t have to download AIM, launch AIM express, or go to Meebo. Since I’m already at FB it’s a fast and easy way to get in touch. They’ve also started 3rd Party access to it via Digsby and Adium.

    On the downer side – Stalk me like WHOA. Not only do you know that I’m on, you can call me out on it. I don’t like that there isn’t any sort of notification that you have a message like the flashing taskbar button with AIM – sometimes I have FB on in the background and someone FB messages me and I don’t catch it for an hour.

    I don’t think that FB chat will ever change the dominance of mainstream messenger clients like AIM, Live Chat, YahooIM, Skype etc etc etc but it does stand to be a convenience tool.



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