February 13, 2007

"One important and worthy change in the just released Windows Live Messenger 8.1, is a new and currently still secret emoticon that will raise money for a good cause when used.

ninemillion.org, a "UN Refugee Agency led campaign to raise awareness and funds for education and sport programs for refugee youth, many of whom are forced to spend years of their young lives away from home with little hope of returning." Microsoft partnered with them and will donate money for every Live search performed at this site until March 31st 2007. They also have special Windows Live Space about the agency and we just learned from Inky that Windows Live Messenger 8.1 is also involved in the fundraising. If you put one of the shortcuts below in your display name, Microsoft will contribute to ninemillion.org every time you start a conversation.

*sierra *bgca *9mil *hsus *komen *one *mssoc *care *acs *oxfam *mod *help *red+u *unicef *wwf *naf

This has yet to be announced officially so we have no idea whether they're already tracking this, but if you already downloaded Windows Live Messenger 8.1.0178 it wouldn't hurt putting of these keyboard shortcuts in your nickname and start chatting :) Expect people wondering where you got the new emo from!

It's been two years since a new emoticon was introduced into Messenger, and this is a respectable way to do it! It's a bit like the nickname advertising that exists in China, but in a noble way.

UPDATE: If you right-click someone with the i'm emoticon, you'll see a new menu item called What is i'm that links to a yet unavailable website about the campaign."

Posted by dwergs @ Mess.be

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