Rest in Peace, PowWow Chat
The following story appeared on Individual.com January 22, 2001
By Steven Bonisteel, Newsbytes
COLORADO SPRINGS, COLORADO, U.S.A.
A little more than a year after it was being touted as the instant messaging (IM) software of choice by Internet service providers such as AT&T and UK-based Freeserve, Tribal Voice's PowWow was to transmit its final person-to-person missive today.
PowWow ended its days in the hands of CMGIion, a subsidiary of dot-com operating company CMGI Inc. [NASDAQ:CMGI], which purchased Tribal Voice in late 1999.
Begun by John McAfee of anti-virus-software fame in the mid-1990s, Tribal Voice was one of the Web's early "community" sites and, later, its PowWow software was supposed to tap into America Online's instant-messaging network for company's such as AT&T and Freeserve, which were eager to allow their subscribers to communicate with users of AOL Instant Messenger (AIM). But Tribal Voice's troubles with powerful AOL were many, including an AOL lawsuit over its use of the term "buddy list" and AOL's move to block PowWow traffic completely shortly after CMGI announced it was purchasing the technology.
Former Tribal Voice Chief Executive Officer Ross Bagully was an early driving force behind the industry-sponsored IMUnified organization, stumping for interoperability among IM applications and lobbying regulators to make the opening of AOL's AIM a condition of approval for its takeover of Time Warner.
However, IMUnified members were dealt a blow earlier this month when an FCC decision on the issue called only for open access to "advanced" IM networks in the future. Such advanced IM messaging might include streaming video, but the new AOL Time Warner is under no obligation to contemplate open access until it launches such a service.
Despite the demise of PowWow, Bagully hasn't given up the campaign for interoperable IM. On Thursday, MessageVine Inc., a company that offers private- label IM technology for both traditional ISPs and wireless carriers, announced that Bagully had been named to its advisory board.
MessageVine, an IMUnified booster formerly known as Multimate.net and which has offices in Israel and the US, pointed to Bagully's commitment to industry- wide standards for interoperability as one of the reasons it sought him as an advisor.
MessageVine is at: http://www.messagevine.com/ .
PowWow was at: http://www.powwow.com/ .
Reported by Newsbytes.com, http://www.newsbytes.com .
(20010119/WIRES ONLINE, BUSINESS/)