Friday, April 25

Status epilepticus: the 50 funniest instant messenger statuses

In 2001-2003, back when instant messaging was young and social networking was something we did in bars, I was working at Yahoo! and had a lot of fun trying to write wittier status messages for Yahoo! Messenger than the 500-odd other employees (see, this is why the company is now in the toilet. Too much time being clever in Yahoo! Messenger.)


I was cleaning out some cruft on my web host today and came across a forgotten list of some of the best IM status messages I'd seen while working at Yahoo!. Some of them may be too 'insider' (e.g. "Venkat" was senior engineering manager at Yahoo! and it was always a battle to get some engineering resources from his team) but many of them have universal appeal. Where known, I've credited their author by their Yahoo! Messenger ID. Many of those people still go by the same IDs, so if you're interested, try googling them (oops, I mean "yahooing" them.)

However I think I speak for all the original authors when I say: please go ahead and use any of these you wish. Enjoy!


  • 10,000 Leagues Under The C++

  • Now featuring multi-redundant links!

  • Wireless and clueless

  • All your engineers are belong to Venkat

  • Disk space, the final frontier

  • Do, or Ctrl-Z, there is no 'try'

  • Home is where the base href is

  • There's no page like home

  • About to be replaced by a shell script

  • On the internet, noone knows I'm a parent


  • Living la vida Yoda

  • Is anybody out there?

  • On Messenger, nobody can hear you scream

  • The less i know the more i appear to understand

  • Phasers set to stun

  • Savaging the soothed beast

  • Filmed in Cinemascope

  • Communication creates the illusion of progress

  • Not at your desk

  • But more, much more than this, you'll do it my way!

  • I am a work of speculative fiction

  • Luck can't last a lifetime unless you die young

  • Conan the Humanitarian (naikrovek, 2002)

  • Let the Wookie win (naikrovek, 2002)

  • Stigmata - high-five gone awry (karen jackson 2002)

  • Winona, if you don't steal, i'll go out with you (naikrovek, 2002)

  • Only the young die young

  • It hasn't been your day, your week, your month, or even your year

  • My PDA says it's your birthday, but it cares more than I do
  • When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. When all you have is nails, it's Hammer Time.


  • Advertising is 85% confusion and 15% commision


  • Pull apart my buns and smear them with butter (Easter)

I Hate Work

  • Capitalisation is in the eye of the shareholder

  • What if the Hokey-Pokey IS what it's all about? (Stephanie Snyder, 2001)

  • Camel, eye of needle... grease...

  • 99% of the game is half mental

  • All I want is a warm bed and a kind word and unlimited power

  • Like a snowball gathering steam (the_bigtee 2003)

  • Busier than a leper in an all-hands meeting (goonker 2003)

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