IRC can be confusing. Here's the help you need. If you just need to access the Vast Empire channel, it's actually quite easy. Follow these instructions to get there fast.
1. Open the main page of the Vast Empire or click here.
2. Look on the left under Logistics for Java Chat:
3. Read the CoC, and then click Agree at the bottom of the page.
4. If a security warning comes up, click Yes.
5. Your nickname should already by there for you, so just click Connect and your done.