You don't need to pay a fee!
mIRC asks for a fee, but it's not like the program isn't going to work if you don't pay it.
it's weird how people can not be aware of that. isn't that the way all shareware has worked since the beginning of time? nobody ACTUALLY pays for it.
if you have some sort of a moral issue with using the program without paying the fee, then just download a free IRC client. there are loads of them. a lot of people dig xchat or opera. personally i prefer chatzilla, which runs as an extention of firefox. or you can just use the java chat, which is built right into the site. *points to command bar* ^^^
so now you have no excuse, eclipse. i expect to see your ass in IRC tomorrow evening!