1. Computing

Will Yahoo! Start Charging for IM?

By May 16, 2008

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In this week's Reader's Mailbag, one reader frantically seeks information about a mysterious Yahoo! instant message she received--and what it could mean for a whole community of Yahoo! Messenger users.

Q: I am fairly new to Yahoo! Messenger, but I just received an IM claiming my account will start requiring a $14 monthly membership fee. Can they really do that? --Bev, Nevada

Dear Bev,
Theoretically, Yahoo! could start charging for any product they chose--it is a business, after all. However, it sounds to me like you have fallen prey to yet another Internet hoax.

Several years ago, a popular hoax involved IM users receiving e-mail or IM alerts which informed users if they did not sign a petition or forward the e-mail to friends, their IM privledges would be revoked or would cost them a monthly fee. Snopes.com recently discussed this hoax at length. Read more about Instant Messaging hoaxes on About's Urban Legends site.

Have a question, comment or concern regarding your IM?
E-mail Brandon now or consider posting for our expert readers on the IM Forums! (Membership is free, but required to post.)

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