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Friday, 04 May 2007
Yahoo! Web Messenger

Yahoo! Messenger for the WebI don't personally feel that Yahoo! has ever done anything by halves, it's either "all or nothing" and in the case of their new Yahoo! Messenger for the Web they have without doubt, dished up an "all".. with a little room for improvement, but more on that later :)

What's new and what's hot:
tabbed IMing is in... and it's fantastic!
Message History (Archives) are stored online... handy :)
Custom Status Messages (in the java version we only had available and invisible)
Unlike Meebo, Yahoo! Messenger for the Web is Adobe Flash based (you need to have Adobe Flash v9)
Supported browsers are Internet Explorer, Firefox (Windows and Mac), Opera, Netscape or Safari
Windows Live Messenger user / friend support
Avatar support in your IM windows (be it a Yahoo! Avatar or a personal image)
Scrolling text notification of new IM's received in your browser title/s and browser task bar button/s
Easy access via http://web.im or http://webmessenger.yahoo.com
oh and did I mention the new Flash smileys... one in particular I'm very partial too ;)
if you want to know more about the what's available and how it all goes together check out our article Yahoo! Messenger for Web Features.

What Can't you do?
Conference or Chat, File Transfer, Photo Sharing, Voice or Video, use IMvironments, Audibles, LaunchCast Radio, PlugIns and Audibles.

One feature I missed terribly, even though it's not even available in the Yahoo! Messenger desktop client, is a spell checker, I guess I'm just use to having one available in the majority of my browsers when needed, there is one available in Yahoo! Answers (not so good), Yahoo! Mail Beta (which is brilliant!) but alas not in Yahoo! Messenger for Web.

What else can't you do?
umm... I really don't think you can go past the new Yahoo! Smileys :p

the bee :D
but there is a pirate also..
but it's not as cool as the bee ;)
more news about the latest Yahoo! Messenger web smileys is HERE

Eeek! There's an Advert!
Personally I've never actually had a problem with the ads that are in Yahoo! Messenger version 8.1, in fact I just adore the ones that site directly below my friends list, but the removing ads topic is always up for great debate with many users desperately wanting to kill them off.

If I used Yahoo! Mail more often I might find that the size of the adverts displayed in there would rattle my chains eventually, but there is a premium service available which I believe removes them so it would be a "put up or shut up" clear cut situation. I don't do Yahoo! Chat so I have no idea how intrusive those ads are, but I understand from others that they are one of the worst...

All that aside, there is a rather large right hand column advert visible in Yahoo! Messenger for Web but Yahoo! has addressed this issue head on.. and shirt free...

Why is there a big advertisement in Yahoo! Messenger for the Web?
Yahoo! Messenger free! But not for us. For us, providing the best, most feature-rich (and fun!) messaging environments available anywhere costs money. We want to keep offering Yahoo! Messenger for free, and we also want to invest in even more and better features in the future. So we decided to show an ad.
Working with Messenger users, we received feedback that the most unobtrusive place to put an ad in Yahoo! Messenger for the Web is at the right side of the screen. So that's where we put it. It won't expand, and it won't turn into a school of fish swimming across your screen.

Not Available for your Country?
If you can't access Yahoo! Messenger for the Web because it generates the following message

"Coming Soon! Yahoo! Messenger for the Web is not yet available for your country"

then don't worry, as there seems to be a very simple way around this that works a treat :)

My main Yahoo! ID is bourbon_bee, it's associated with bourbon_bee@yahoo.co.uk (due to my being based in NZ) and every time I tried to login to the web messenger I was automatically redirected to a Yahoo! UK web messenger page displaying "Coming Soon" notice, if I switched ID's (to a USA based one) I was in with a grin, the limit is understandable but still frustrating if you're are one of the many users stuck in the endless loop. I was quite prepared to accept this and just wait it out... that is until I checked out Sarah's Yahoo! Messenger web release blog post and noticed one of the comments by "user" which indicated that all I had to do was change my Preferred Content setting.. so I did.. and tada! instant access to the web version.

Simply login to your Yahoo! Account Details
Scroll down to Member Information, what you need to change is your Prefered Content (mine was set to UK),

click on Edit (to the right of the Member Information heading).

Scroll down to General Preferences, click the active link that specifies your preferred country content

Under Language & Content , click on New Setting, now select Engish - United States from the drop down menu

don't forget to click Finish

you'll be taken back to your Account Details page, where you will see your new Content setting

click on Finish, now try and login to Yahoo! Messenger for the Web again and you shouldn't have a problem :)

 Need to know more?
Check out our article Yahoo! Messenger for Web features and also  our article Yahoo! Messenger for Web Smileys

External Links:
Yahoo! Web Messenger: http://web.im or http://webmessenger.yahoo.com
Yodel "Yahoo! Messenger Hold the Download"
Yahoo! Messenger Blog NEW! Yahoo! Messenger for the Web
Yahoo! Messenger Help New Web Messenger
Yahoo! Web Messenger Abuse Form
Yahoo! Messenger for the Web Privacy Policy
Download Yahoo! Messenger version 8.1

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 15 May 2007 )

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