Going away message

via flickr user ijustwanttobeperceivedthewayiam

From my weekly email Tim’s Hot Takes. Subscribe to get it every Sunday.

What I’m asking

This week, AOL, Inc. announced Instant Messenger was shutting down.

Most people’s first thought was, wait, AIM is still around?? Their second thought, if they ever used it back in the ’90s or early 2000s, was probably nostalgia over away messages, acronyms and emoticons. I was never a big AIM user, but looking back I can see that it was a major transition point for Internet communication from the more formal language of email to a more natural and hyperpersonal way of communicating that dominates the digital world today. Snapchat is the direct progeny of AIM, which makes me wonder what will take its place in the next 20 years. But right now, I want to look back at AIM. What memory stands out for you about IM? Hit reply and let me know. TTYL.

What I’m thinking

36.2 lessons for 36 years. Also thank you to everyone who donated to the Red Cross for my birthday!

What I’m writing

The banality of Breitbart.

What I’m doing

Trying to clear out and remodel the basement, which I want to turn into an exercise/yoga/meditation/dance area. Got any ideas for me?

What I’m hearing

Zeynep Tufekci is the author of Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest. Her interview with Buzzfeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith is somewhat mindblowing.

One takeaway: The modern form of censorship isn’t suppression, it’s distraction. I blame AIM.

Educator. Podcast addict. Wrote a book about creativity: http://bit.ly/thecreativejourney

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