So anyway, there I was this morning, opening up the mIRC message boards, and what do I see? Since yesterday, another 3 or 4 requests for help with downloading and "file swapping" issues.
I don't think that anyone can deny that mIRC is now perceived by a large proportion of its new users as a file-trading program, and not as a chat program. How many times have we heard "well, my friend said I could get movies/albums/warez/pr0n on mIRC"? Anyone who doesn't believe this should hang out on a large network's help channel for a while, or look at how many help channels have felt it necessary to specifically state that they won't help with these issues.
While I respect Khaled's point, stated here
, that file sharing is a part of normal communication - hey, it's great to see a pic of the person we're talking to and find out how wildly incorrect our preconceptions were - I nevertheless think it is high time that some of the confusion about what mIRC is was removed by excising FSERV from mIRC.
The key problem here is that by explicitly allowing file *serving* (as opposed to the ability to transfer files one file at a time by "manual" DCC) mIRC has come to be seen as designed explicitly for this purpose.
I am well aware that the immediate result would be the appearance of file serving scripts instead - well that's just fine, because it will at least be clearer that mIRC *itself* is not a file transfer system.
I am also sure that we'll have some passionate defences of leaving file serving inside mIRC proper, but I tell you now, my own opinion on this isn't going to change - so like me, if/when you post one, be prepared to face the fact that we'll just have to agree to disagree!
Lastly, I suppose it's possible that some people will argue that file serving is a useful marketing tool for mIRC, encouraging people to download it in the first place - meaning, theoretically, that more people are likely to register. Personally, though, I don't think that someone interested in getting "free" illegal software, files etc. is very likely to then PAY for mIRC...
Just my thoughts