POE::Component::IRC is the successor to Net::IRC, and the de facto standard for building IRC-based applications. Its ease-of-use and solid documentation make it the perfect tool for building IRC bots. The author is very open and responsive to feedback. As such, the module is constantly being improved.
This component is a very handy abstraction of one of the more bizarre internet protocols in existence. The component itself is very easy to get started with, particularly for those with some experience as IRC users. The framework is slightly disadvantaged when it comes to creating handlers for some of the more obscure response events, but the blame there lies almost entirely with the RFC spec, and the component's facility for handling these responses is present, it just took some getting used to.