Empathy – messaging program

Empathy is an instant messaging (IM) and voice over IP (VoIP) client which supports text, voice, video, file transfers, and inter-application communication over various IM protocols.

Empathy consists of a rich set of reusable instant messaging widgets, and a GNOME client using those widgets. It uses Telepathy and Nokia’s Mission Control, and reuses Gossip’s UI. It’s compatible with any client which implements Jingle and supports ICE and the corresponding XEPs properly.

The main goal is to permit desktop integration by providing libempathy and libempathy-gtk libraries. libempathy-gtk is a set of powerful widgets that can be embeded into any GNOME application.

Empathy has been included in the GNOME desktop since version 2.24.

The project needs a new maintainer.

Features include:

  • Multi-protocol support: Google Talk (Jabber/XMPP), IRC, Salut, AIM, Facebook, Yahoo!, Gadu Gadu, Groupwise, ICQ and QQ. Additional protocols are supported with libpurple plug-in: OSCAR (AIM/ICQ/MobileMe), Bonjour (Apple’s implementation of Zeroconf), MySpaceIM, QQ, MXit, Novell GroupWise, YMSG, Gadu-Gadu, Lotus Sametime, SIMPLE, SILC, Zephyr.(Supported protocols depend on installed Telepathy Connection Manager components.) The software works with all protocols supported by Pidgin.
  • File transfer for XMPP, and local networks.
  • Voice and video call using SIP, XMPP and Google Talk.
  • IRC support.
  • Conversation theming.
  • Sharing and viewing location information.
  • Account editor (specialized UI for most protocols).
  • Auto away and extended away using gnome-screensaver.
  • Auto re-connect using Network Manager.
  • Private and group chat (with smileys and spellcheck).
  • Powerful theme engine for chats.
  • Log conversations, view/search in logs and prepend logs in new chats.
  • Adding new contacts and viewing/editing contact information.
  • Voice and Video call using SIP and Jingle.
  • Python bindings for libempathy and libempathy-gtk.
  • Collaborative work using Tubes.
  • Desktop sharing.
  • Wayland support.
  • Internationalization support.

Website: wiki.gnome.org/action/show/Apps/Empathy
Support: FAQ, Repository
Developer: Mikael Hallendal, Richard Hult, Martyn Russell, Xavier Claessens, and Guillaume Desmottes
License: GNU GPL v2


Empathy is written in C. Learn C with our recommended free books and free tutorials.

Return to Instant Messaging Home Page | Return to VoIP Home Page

Ongoing series
Linux for StartersNew to Linux? Read our Linux for Starters series.
Free and Open Source SoftwareThe largest compilation of the best free and open source software in the universe. Supplied with our legendary ratings charts.
Linux ReviewsHundreds of in-depth reviews offering our unbiased and expert opinion on software.
Alternatives to GoogleAlternatives to Google's Products and Services examines your options to migrate from the Google ecosystem with open source Linux alternatives.
Linux System ToolsEssential Linux system tools looks at small, indispensable utilities, useful for system administrators as well as regular users.
Linux ProductivityLinux utilities to maximise your productivity. Small, indispensable tools, useful for anyone running a Linux machine.
Home Computer EmulatorsHome computers became commonplace in the 1980s. Emulate home computers such as the ZX81, Amstrad CPC, and ZX Spectrum.
Now and ThenNow and Then examines how promising open source software fared over the years.
Linux at HomeLinux at Home looks at a range of home activities where Linux can play its part, making the most of our time at home, keeping active and engaged.
Linux CandyLinux Candy opens up to the lighter side of Linux. Have some fun!
Best Free Android AppsBest Free Android Apps. There's a strict eligibility criteria for inclusion in this series
Programming BooksThese best free books accelerate your learning of every programming language
Programming TutorialsThese free tutorials offer the perfect tonic to the free programming books series
Stars and StripesStars and Stripes is an occasional series looking at the impact of Linux in the USA
Share this article

Share your Thoughts

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.