no i have removed but nothing happened but no need to remove empathy to have desktop integration with pidgin.
i had this somewhere on internet and it worked like a charm for me :
sudo apt-get install pidgin ( if not installed)
- sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/gnome3
- sudo apt-get update
- sudo apt-get install gnome-shell-extensions-pidgin
- sudo apt-get install gnome-tweak-tool ( if u have not installed aldready)
open advance setting in gnome shell and just make sure that the pidgin-integration-extension in shell extension is in on position. if it is in on then every thing going to be fine as it is not supported on some gnome-shell , i f it is not in on position or if is somewhat like disabled or if u are not able to toggle it to on/off position then i think integration will not be possible(not sure) , try to update ur system and try again.
if the pidgin-integration-extension is running fine i.e. it is on position then :
press alt + f2 then type r and press enter or just log out and log in to restart shell
remove empathy : sudo apt-get purge empathy ( not necessary )
*note : to avoid getting both the standard Pidgin notifications and the new ones, in Pidgin select Tools > Plugins and uncheck the box next to "Libnotify Popups".