Chapter 25. Using Instant Messaging and Chat
People like to talk—even when they're online.
There are two primary means of “talking” to other users via the Internet, both of which let you carry on text-based conversations in real time. When you want to hold a private one-on-one talk, you use an application called instant messaging. When you want to talk publicly, with a large group of people, you use Internet chat.
Instant messaging is the ideal medium for very short, very immediate messages. Online chat is better for longer discussions, and for group discussions. (And neither one is great for longer, more formal communications; email is best for those sort of messages.) ...