Internet Relay Chat

Paul L. Witt, Texas Christian University

Secure Communication Using Internet

Relay Chat

Defining Statement

Historical Development

Structure and Operation





Social Factors

IRC and Online Community

IRC and Relationship Development

Anonymity and Virtual Identity

Security and Legal Issues

Hate and Harassment on IRC

Children and IRC

Scripts and Viruses

Mischief and Sabotage on IRC

Ensuring Privacy and Security

Future of IRC

Organizational Applications

Individual Applications


Cross References


Further Reading


Defining Statement

Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is a worldwide system of synchronous, text-based conferencing on the Internet. IRC was the first online chat system to achieve widespread adoption, and despite the increasing popularity of Web-based chat rooms and instant messaging systems, it continues to be the synchronous medium of choice for many Internet users. Numerous sites on the World Wide Web contain IRC tutorials, network information, and software downloads. Because IRC is based on a client–server networking model, users simply install client software on their local computer and access the Internet to create a new channel (chat group) or join an existing channel. Using established network protocols, messages travel from an individual's computer to an IRC server, and then are relayed through other servers if necessary before being delivered to the designated ...

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