The product that gets the credit (or the blame) for starting the instant-message trend that lead to our constant-contact society is going away. AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) will shut down this December.

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There were ways to chat before AOL Instant Messenger launched in 1997, but this is the product that brought instant messaging into the mainstream. The last day for the once-popular chat service will be December 15. According to a statement from AOL (now, like Yahoo, a part of Verizon) AIM was a victim of its own success. “AIM tapped into new digital technologies and ignited a cultural shift, but the way in which we communicate with each other has profoundly changed. As a result, we’ve made the decision that we will be discontinuing AIM effective December 15, 2017. We are more excited than ever to continue building the next generation of iconic brands and life-changing products for users around the world.”

AIM users have a long list of alternatives like texting, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and the private message functions of Instagram, Twitter, and other apps.

How many of you used AIM at one time?  How many are still using it?  Let us know in the comments.