Back in the day, long before I joined the popular chess servers, there was Yahoo!Chess. It was free, which is why I joined in the first place. There was just a couple of problems. First, there were no controls in cheating unlike on paid-service sites like ICC. Second, the interface had a "cartoony" feel to it. And so it wasn't long before I just gave up.
But now, courtesy of Zero G Games, Yahoo! has relaunched their chess site. The site offers multiplayer and cross-platform capability which allows players to take their games on cell phones. Cool!