A note of congratulations to the library staff at Cornell University, who are celebrating the ten-year anniversary of the launch of their chat reference service. I remember in fall 2000 looking closely at how they ran their service as my library was in the planning stages for its own chat service (launched March 2001).
For a thumbnail history of chat reference services, the best starting point is Bernie Sloan’s 2006 article:
Sloan, Bernie. “Twenty Years of Virtual Reference.” Internet Reference Services Quarterly 11.2 (2006): 91-95. Web. 22 Apr. 2010.