I had AIM several years ago. I had to remove it from my computer because it was too distracting. IM has a way of being intrusive and distracting, and I was not going to fall into that trap.
Now, my needs have changed, and I decided to try IM again. I installed the new AIM, and it was a mess. It messed up my computer's ability to find the right wireless networks, and just had too much distracting stuff going on. I couldn't just do what I needed to do without a three-ring-circus of web pages opening, email messages for accounts I didn't want or know I had...YUCK!!
And then a colleague suggested that I try Pidgin. It has just what I need, and is an inobtrusive as IM can be. It also has a Babelfish quality to it that I love, but have not had the need to use. It basically enables you to integrate all your IM accounts. Ahhhh...Simplicity!! I only need one solution. As I said, I don't need that right now, but I love the idea of it.
Pidgin may not be the best solution out there, but my experience proves a couple of things. Technology is best when it lets you do what you need to do, and gets out of the way. The other thing is that people will try what their friends suggest, and those are the things that have an opportunity to become loved.