Pleased to see Chris Gilbey activating his guest blogger role and interested to see what he has to say about Skype.

Last night I had my own excellent Skype experience. A colleague in California and I had been trying to work out a good time to talk. I saw he was listed on the Skype interface as being online, so we were able to have a very productive forty five minutes or so going over some important business matters. It was quite late at night where he was and ordinarily I would not have dreamt of calling him up then. That’s one of the big advantages of Skype – being able to see when someone is online, even though it has to be said that some people forget to change their status when they go away, and I’ve been guilty of that more than once.

A very good tip I got from Phil Wolff who blogs at SkypeJournal is to set the default to chat, for double clicking on the contact link for the person you want to connect with. That gives the person the option of indicating that they are not actually available to talk just now – harder to do, in my opinion, when you call first. You just go to Tools – Options – General and make sure the default is set to chat:

This is also helpful for communicating with people who actually prefer the chat mode rather than voice, like the colleague the other day who had laryngitis.

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