53 mln Americans use instant messaging
2004 Pew Internet & American Life surveys reveal that more than four in ten online Americans instant message (IM). That reflects about 53 million American adults who use instant messaging programs. About 11 million of them IM at work and they are becoming fond of its capacity to encourage productivity and interoffice cooperation. At the same time, IM usage varies widely across different age groups. Instant messengers utilize IM not only as a way to expand and remain connected their social circle, but also as a form of self-expression, through use of customized away messages, profiles and buddy icons.