What are some alternatives?
When comparing Textual and Qwebirc, you can also consider the following products
irssi - Irssi is a terminal based IRC client for UNIX systems.
Kiwi IRC - A hand-crafted IRC client that you can enjoy. Designed to be used easily and freely.
HexChat - HexChat is a fork of XChat with bug fixes and new features.
mIRC - mIRC: Internet Relay Chat client
Quassel IRC - Quassel IRC is a modern, cross-platform, distributed IRC client based on the Qt4 framework.
Pidgin - Pidgin is an easy to use and free chat client used by millions. Connect to AIM, MSN, Yahoo, and more chat networks all at once.