Pros AOL funds the chat network.
Cons Integrated ads & bundled spyware on install; only uses AIM network.
Summary There are only two "products" or services that I like from AOL: the AIM network, and Winamp. However, while Winamp is ad-free, AIM has adware both integrated within the program and packaged with the install. If you care about performance and privacy, this will **** you off. I used to use program cracks that changed features of AIM, cutting out the ads and whatnot- but those are spotty, and require re-installing when updating the AIM core. After a while, I just switched to trillian 3- its more customizable anyway.
Kudos to AOL for creating the golden standard of Instant Messaging. Now just cut those damned ads out!