Ares is not just a network for file sharing; it is a center for good will and community. If nobody chose to give back as much as they took from the community, the application simply wouldn't exist. With that in mind, Ares offers community building options such as chat in order to help continue to enrich and bring together the diverse community that makes use of Ares. There are many users that participate regularly in chat and there is always an open channel to dive into somewhere. If you are interested in diving in a little deeper into Ares, then chat is the perfect place to start.
Step 1: Finding a Nickname
If you've used Ares a few times, you've probably noticed that every once in a while a pop up comes up asking if you'd be interested in creating a nick name. Most users simply ignore this prompt at first, but this is one of the first steps in chat, coming up with a nick name. You can begin chatting without having a nickname, and Ares will simply assign you a name starting with anon (short for anonymous) and ending in a few random characters. While this gets the job done, it does not give anyone a name to recognize you by, and having a name that you can be associated with is one of the most important parts of the community. To give yourself a nickname, open Ares and click on control panel. Move over to the chat tab in the newly opened control panel, and there you will see the place to put in your new nickname. As soon as you have one typed in, you are done with this step.
Step 2: Other Chat Options
Like any online chat room, Ares has avatars, as well as the ability to share information such as age, sex, and location under the chat tab. You can fill these in with anything, depending on how much you want other Ares members to know about you. It is not required to put anything into these fields in order for you to chat, but some people choose to in order to make it a more personal experience. Under these fields you will see options for Chat and Direct chat. Direct chat allows Ares users to message you directly, which could be useful if one of them had a question about a particular file that you were sharing. This has options for whether to allow or disallow messages, and what to type for away messages. Under the regular chat options, you have the freedom to choose what can and can't be seen in a standard chat. For example, if you select, block emotes, then no stylized smiley faces will ever be seen on your screen in chat again.
Step 3: Joining/Starting a Chat
In order to join a chat once you have everything else set up to your liking, all you have to do to chat is simply go to the top of your Ares window and click on chat. Once you have clicked on chat, a host of chat rooms will show up. These are all of the chat rooms which are currently active and populated with other members. All you have to do to join one that sounds appealing to you is double click on it. You will be instantly transported to the room in the midst of conversation where you can begin sharing ideas and opinions with other Ares users. If you don't feel like joining any of these rooms, also called Channels, you can start your own channel by going back to the chat main menu, and clicking on host your channel which will give you option for hosting your own channel so that people can join your self-created chat and talk about things that are relevant to you. It is not hard to see how you can get involved in the Ares community by tweaking a few settings.