I see that the Instant Messaging Bogeyman is back in town :-) This time its local IT analyst, Bruce McCabe, writing for the Australian. In his opinion, "The only quality that makes instant messaging interesting as a business tool can be summed up in two words: presence detection."
I'm actually a little confused about the point McCabe is trying to make. On one hand he provides examples of where IM is useful (like a widely dispersed organisation) but then gives it the thumbs down because of lost productivity (interuptions, lack of richness, slow typing).
Its a shame that he fails to mention other benefits such as:
- Integration with Webconferencing tools;
- Access to information through interactive IM 'bots;
- The ability to indicate if you are busy, away or free to talk;
- As a secondary real-time communication tool while you are on the phone to someone else or to support a teleconferencing and videoconferencing meeting;
- And so on...
Looking at the broader picture of IM you actually find there is more to it than just chat or presence alone.