A neat little WordPress Plugin and Widget to show your current online status on your blog. The plugin is powered via onlinestatus.org and supports most IM services including AOL, MSN, Yahoo!, Jabber (inc. Google Talk), Skype and ICQ.
- Support for nearly all major IM networks.
- Works as both a standard plugin and WordPress Widget.
- Automatically checks for status updates at regular intervals
- Intelligently switches between 6 status servers to ensure correct status info.
- Configurable icon-packs to tailor the display of status.
- Quick page load times – minimises activity and caches status.
Installation wise, the plugin offers you two options, one a widget install, for those using the WordPress widget plugin. For others who don’t you will need to add the code manually into your template.
This plugin is ideal for those who have several chat ids across various network and want to make it extremely easy for those who stop by their blogs. Ofcourse, this also means that you are one click away from pesky users itching to contact you.
This is one plugin I wouldn’t use personally because I am a bit reluctant to be accessible so easily. I choose who I want to chat with and only share information.
However, if you’re the person two paragraphs up, then this is the best option you have as of now (unless you want to manually add the code).
The only downside I see of the plugin is the use of onlinestatus.org. To check the online status, the plugin relies on several servers which host onlinestatus.org. While normally this shouldn’t be a problem and you have enough redundancy it should not cause a problem. However, you have to remember that you are at the mercy of the hosts.
A good addition to the plugin would be to use the networks online status directly as well as onlinestatus.org, for those that support. I’m not sure if all do, but Yahoo! has this support.
Are you already using IM Online on your blog? What has been your experience so far with it?
If you are not using it, would you? How accessible do you wish to be to your visitors?