Method and System to Define Scheduled Chats that Auto-Invite Users Over a Time Period
Original Publication Date: 2004-Nov-02
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Nov-02
Today's instant messaging systems allow individual users to initiate chat sessions person to person, or a person to multiple people. Having the ability to define a group representing a set of people and allowing a user to initiate a multi-user chat has also been described in previous disclosures and/or prior art. What does not exist today is the ability to define a scheduled chat that invites a set of users, and have the system invite them at the start time and more importantly anytime during the meeting if they happen to logon to the messaging system.
Method and System to Define Scheduled Chats that Auto -Invite Users Over a Time Period
Enable a user to create a "scheduled chat" whose definition lives on or is accessible to the instant messenger server. Data contained about the scheduled chat on the server is the set of users that are to be invited, what time or times the group chat should be initiated, an optional "first message" that is displayed to each person when they join the chat (which could include things like a meeting name, conference call details, etc.), and an option for if a transcript should be sent to the group when the group chat ends. When it is time for the chat to be initiated, the server will send out invitations to all users. At the start time not all users may actually be on the messaging system, so it will automatically invite them if they happen to signon during the scheduled timeslot. In this manner, the chat will start without requiring the owner to initate it (the server does it) and tardy users will get invited even after the original chat invitation. It would also be possible with this approach to have a "standing" or continuous chat so that a user is invited anytime they logon to the messaging system. For example, it would be possible to create a "hotnews" chat for all IT staff that is always active such that IT staff users are automatically invited when they logon to the message system.