Network that split away from EFNet
in July 1996
due the issue of how much power system operators should have. IRCNet formed with the basis that there should be a set of rules defining what sys ops could and could not do, this viewpoint was opposed by many of the US based EFNet server. The idea had existed for some time when a major US IRC hub which was the main connection with the European IRC servers disconnected the link without warning, this resulted in a group of European admins declaring their independence.
All the European EFnet servers joined IRCNet and they were later joined by the EFnet servers in Japan and Australia.
As the new network included the worlds first IRC server, they decided to adopt the name IRCNet which up to that time had been used as a generic name for an IRC network. Prior to this name they were known as the "European EFnet".
IRCNet is currently the second most popular IRC network regularly having over a hundred thousand users.