No, not “MSN Live Messenger” – that’s when Microsoft fucked it up on purpose to force us all on to their new toy they’d just bought called Skype. I’m talking about MSN Messenger – or just “MSN”, as we called it.
Many glorious years were spent on that thing. Many hours all through the night and many girls undressing on webcam for me in the video chat (come on, be real, we didn’t buy webcams to “say hello to granny in Australia” 😏). But also up all night having the most fucked up chats you could possibly imagine (and trust me, you’ll be glad you can’t imagine mine). Often you never knew if the person was real or just another man – sites were littered with people’s MSN back in the day. It was simple, quick, fun, and often a rush – but above all : all completely harmless.
Then along came the car crash that was “Windows Live Messenger”. Yeah, you remember “Windows Live” – yeah that suite of things that, much like the ecosystem of Windows Phones was clearly going to be around ‘4EVA’.
Except of course, it wasn’t. Most of the “Windows Live” set of things doesn’t even exist anymore. The thought was that “oh, we just know that before you start chatting, you want the latest headlines, from all your favourite sites, and you want to see what your friends have been up to! Yeah?!”..
No, actually. There’s these things called “news sites” for the former and for the latter we’ll just stick to asking them, thanks. See this is why we loaded up a chat app – to chat. No one asked for the fuck ton of added clutter, and no one wanted it.
And so strangely enough most people migrated to Skype – which I guess was Microsoft’s cunning (and not very subtle) plan all along. They were never going to be interested in even bothering to maintain Windows Live Messenger – much less give us the version that we wanted, when they’d just paid 8.5 billion Dollars for Skype (which back then still actually functioned most of the time).
And so it was in October 2014 that we were forced to wave goodbye forever to what once was the single best messenger on the planet, but that Microsoft had deliberately made a complete hatchet job of.
I will never forget you, beloved MSN. 😢