Our generation has already got in touch with several social networks when we were youth, and although we still preferred to go outdoors rather than spend computer hours, some of us literally fall in their spell. What have we used, what are we still using today and which websites are just surviving? Come with us to remember the legendary sites and programs or the first attempts at field of social networks.
And at the beginning, I ask you a question: how old were you, when you have entered the Internet for the first time? Although we recently celebrated 25 years of Internet in the Czech Republic, it was not as wide spread as it used to be in all households today. If your first contact with the Internet took place in the new millennium, you probably did not know what a powerful tool it will grow from it. Perhaps every young user started playing online games (firstly most primitive one), and only later found that internet communication was not such a bore. So let's move to the beginning of the new millennium and see what was going on.
At the beginning of the new millennium, the Alík.cz server, a social network for children, was run on the popularity wave - this time it was a service that offered children not only communication with their friends but also filling their free time. You could read various fairy tales, jokes, play games, or have counseling advice.
Alik.cz is primarily targeted at younger schoolchildren who are just beginning to be familiar with the internet. Alik's creators have been and are aware of this, and thus teach their users internet safety not only on Alik.cz but on the Internet in general. When migrating to "more mature" networks, the kids are more careful because they know little about Internet security.
Nowadays Alík.cz still exists and offers the same services as it did at that time. It is visited by about 100,000 users a month, who are mostly in the 8-14 age group.
Although Alik.cz can be not recognized or used by you, ICQ ("I Seek You") and its distinctive announcement of the incoming message (O ou) were sure. This simple communicator was at the top in the first decade of the new millennium. ICQ was developed much earlier, in 1996. The first version was developed by Israeli Mirabilis, but most users have this communication client associated with AOL, which bought it from Mirabilis in 1998. It was just the ICQ that became the leader on the market for instant messaging services. The service was built on the OSCAR (Open System for CommunicAtion in Realtime) protocol developed by AOL. It also used this protocol in its second communicator - AIM. Some unofficial clients used the "Talk To OSCAR" protocol, but their support was terminated in 2005.
AOL finally sell entire service to the Russian company Digital Sky Technologies, which still keeps it alive and supplies it with new features. Via ICQ, you can call or make a video call. Redemption by a Russian company makes sense - ICQ is still popular in Russia and some post-Soviet countries, while the Western world preferred networks such as Facebook, Skype and WhatsApp. The question remains when even in these countries ICQ will lose its "magic" quite the same as it did in our country.
In addition to communication, various games have been played through ICQ, including Zoopaloola, Rock Paper Scissors or WarSheep.
Large portals, such as the Seznam or the Centrum, have operated, in addition to e-mail boxes, other communication services that have long been popular, but now some of them belong to someone else.
Let's start with the Seznam - it runs two services that make it possible to connect with other people. Within the class you could write through Spolužáci.cz and if you wanted a more open chat, you could write via Lidé.cz. The lack of interest in these services started with the arrival of foreign social networks, such as Facebook. They were aware of the Seznam and therefore they have taken on their service Lidé.cz rather like a dating site that holds their position on the market. In the case of Spoluzaci, however, no change or innovation has taken place, and it is hard to assume that there is an increasing number of new classes and users in this service. Design is still the same for several years, and the service is rather perceived as an archive of memories for those who have used the service in the past - but the hand on the heart, who has ever opened the Swallows? Most of us in the last grade at elementary school ...
Popular chatting services and tools were also popular, characterized by standing or private chat rooms that were specific to any area, either interest or geography. One of these was XChat.cz, which was taken over by Centrum.cz to a group of students from the Technical University of Liberec. He gained his placement not only because he offered an alternative to the then Lidé.cz, but also because his use on mobile phones enabled one of the three operators in Czech Republic absolutely free of charge. The concept of public chat was great for getting to know new acquaintances that became reality from the virtual world. Each free chat room had its own story and the people who were in it. If such services are still interested, it is difficult to say. On Saturday afternoon, there are about 1,600 users on XChat active. True, it's not a very small number, but there were many more - especially at times when users were overtaking who would have been hunted for as long as possible. The service has also changed its owner - at present, the service is taken care of by enthusiasts who have bought not only XChat from Centrum Holdings but also associated Fotoalba.cz.
On the way to acquaintance went to the web site Líbímseti.cz, which also continues its way to this day. It was based on the idea of an internet dating site, but it also offers various forums, free chat rooms, blogs, or horoscopes. According to Wikipedia, libimseti.cz has the biggest increase in 2008, when the service could have 270,000 unique users. Since then, the popularity of this service has declined. In 2010, the owner and seller sold it. In addition to Líbímseti.cz, XTeen was also used for acquaintance, but he did not live for financial reasons today.
Just as we now recall the services we used a few years ago, we might be remembered for several years on Facebook or Twitter. Perhaps now it sounds unrealistic, but deliberately - you've ever said it's impossible for Xchat or Líbímseti.cz to have a rapid drop in users ...
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