"I changed the quotes in my AOL Instant Messenger profile almost daily, and fretted over the right combinations of font and color to make my IM voice look as bright and edgy as I wanted to be in real life. I started conversations with acquaintances who made me feel shy in person. I imagined I had inner beauty and wit, and that in chatrooms and AIM was where I could shine until that outer beauty showed up. And slowly, the IRL me started to become more like the me I allowed myself to be online... Matt and I built our relationship over AIM. We used AIM because it was our most practical option; like many teenagers in the year 2001, we didn't have cell phones. We did have computers in our respective bedrooms, though, and parents who weren't expecting phone calls after dinner hours."
Here's Compuserve WOW!, a new youth-oriented online service! Commercials for it. C|Net reports on it. The Chicago Tribune. Christian Science Monitor. Suck is less than enthused. (via Wayback) Advertising Age reports that its "editor" will be the guy who created Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego for PBS. Compuserve WOW! will offer its own features as well as unlimited Internet for the low price of $17.95 a month. It's coming your way Spring of 1996! And closing less than a year later....
Better late than never? John Oliver's roughly 16-minute take on online harassment features a 20-year-old AOL commercial, a reworked version of the commercial at the end, and the news (to some of us) that victims of revenge porn may be forced to send pictures of their bodies to the US copyright office in order to get the porn taken down. Oliver's Bing joke occurs at about 13:35.
Youtuber Lazy Game Reviews runs AOL 4 on Windows 8.1 in May of 2015 to see what still works, what's broken, and who's still hanging around the AOL 4 chat rooms.
"How People Described the Internet in the 1990s Is Hilarious" A surprisingly rich listicle of some surprisingly deep (so much zeitgeist) revealing 90's videos and cliches pertaining to computers and the internet. Previously [more inside]
Andy Baio has created a YouTube channel of early internet informational videos: The VHS-Era Internet (1984-1995)
Memories of a Bette Midler Message Board Childhood: Reminiscences from the early days of talking to strangers online.
Mark Ames follows up on The Techtopus (previously) with a new report showing a much larger conspiracy than has been previously reported: [more inside]
AOL chief cuts 401(k) benefits, blames Obamacare and two "distressed babies". "AOL chief executive Tim Armstrong Thursday offered a number of unusual explanations for why his company pulled back its 401(k) benefits for employees this year. The first reason: Obamacare. The second: two women at the company who had 'distressed babies' in 2012." [more inside]
Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Apple, LinkedIn and Aol have all teamed up to oppose widespread government surveillance. In an open letter to the US president and members of congress, the companies urge the government to reform its digital spy apparatus. Live reactions at the Guardian.
Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, Apple are being monitored by the FBI and NSA, with Dropbox "coming soon." So what can you do? Use some alternatives. As Gabriel Weinberg, founder of DuckDuckGo, told NPR: "we made the choice to just not track people so there is nothing to turn over."
On June 3rd, a week after AOL's announcement of the closure of Comics Alliance [previously], Townsquare Media Group opted to acquire the IP, in addition to three music sites focused on country, hip-hop and metal. In response to the turnaround, Comics Alliance opted to recount their change of fortune in sequential format.
On April 26, AOL shut down a series of its subsidiary sites: A broad swath of its AOL Music network, including Spinner - whose staff live-tweeted their own termination - and the feature-focused, oft-linked-on-the-blue comics blog ComicsAlliance. [more inside]
In February, PBS and AOL launched Makers, a video archive containing personal stories and anecdotes told in the first person by women, many of whom have sparked groundbreaking changes in American culture. [more inside]
Living The Dream ... at AOL . For two months last fall, Eric Simons secretly took up residence inside the Internet giant's Palo Alto, Calif., campus, eating free food, enjoying gym access, and building a startup in the process.
Microsoft has agreed to purchase a big chunk of AOL's intellectual property for a big chunk of cash. Left unremarked in most business news coverage is a little matter of history: A closure of sorts for the fiercest -- and possibly the most expensive -- tech rivalry of the dotcom era. Microsoft will own Netscape. [more inside]
Kids today won't know the shrill cry of a 9600 baud, or the magical "doodleeedoo" of a 28.8 modem. Help preserve our digital history. Join us in recording your best impression of a "modem handshake" sound.
The Sierra Network - later the ImagiNation Network - was a gaming and chat service for PCs started by Sierra On-Line in 1991 and shut down by AOL in 1998. [more inside]
One night, I awoke out of a dead sleep, and jumped to my computer, and instantly began typing up an article about David Letterman. I kept going for ten minutes, until I realized I had dreamed it all. There was no article to write; I was simply typing up the same meaningless phrases that we all always used: “LADY GAGA PANTLESS ON LATE NIGHT WITH DAVID LETTERMAN,” or some such.
AOL Hell: An AOL Content Slave Speaks Out.
AOL Hell: An AOL Content Slave Speaks Out.
Thank you for visiting HuffingtonPostLawsuit.com. On April 12, 2011 Plaintiff Jonathan Tasini, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, filed a federal class action lawsuit against The HuffingtonPost.com, Inc., AOL Inc., Arianna Huffington and Kenneth Lerer for unjust enrichment and deceptive business practices. For more information, please see a copy of the complaint or contact Kurzon Strauss LLP.
In February, AOL acquired the Huffington Post for $315 million. (Previously) The formation of The Huffington Post Media Group was announced, to integrate content for a new combined, claimed audience of "117 Million Americans and 270 Million Globally." Then, AOL fired 200 US employees (leaving many sites without editorial staff) and began restructuring. Today, they announced that 30 brands, including popular site Slashfood, will be closed or folded into existing Huffington Post sections. [more inside]
AOL has agreed to acquire the Huffington Post for $315 million. The combined entity will be known as the Huffington Post Media Group and will have Arianna Huffington as president and editor-in-chief. We recently heard from AOL when they posted a rather disappointing quarterly result for the end of 2010, and again when their latest master business plan (read: SEO, SEO, and more SEO) was leaked by Business Insider.
A little ahead of schedule, Yahoo, AOL and Bing have released their lists of items most often searched for in 2010. Google hasn't released their list but you can see popular searches using their Insights program.
TechCrunch has been bought by AOL for between $25 and $60 million . Just in time, because Techcrunch founder Mike Arrington works too hard.
How the AOL-Time Warner Merger Went So Wrong Interviews with the key players involved with the AOL-Time Warner merger about its euphoric rise and pitiful fall. [more inside]
Remember AOL Time Warner, the poster child of dotcom corporate hubris? It's still around, if only for a few more days. On December 9, the current media megacorp will fraction off former computer network behemoth AOL as a web portal firm and online brand. And what will that brand be? It will be a stock photo superimposed with a white Helvetica "Aol." And, well, that's it. [more inside]
Almost three years ago, AOL started on a path towards being a "low-cost producer of high-quality content at scale" when they purchase Weblogs, Inc. in late 2006. At the beginning of 2009, AOL count[ed] more than 75 sites in its publishing portfolio and plans to add 30 more in the coming year, all gathered under Media Glow. AOL currently has approximately 1,500 content-writing staff, around 1,000 of those people are working full time for AOL, the rest are freelancing. That's twice the number from a year ago, and AOL has set the goal of doubling or tripling the total by next year. The TechCrunch article states that these writers include former journalists at BusinessWeek, New York Times, USA Today, ESPN, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Consumer Reports, Condé Nast and scores of regional and national newspapers and magazines. In an interview, Marty Moe, SVP of AOL Media, said: "Principally, we have none of the legacy costs associated with producing print publications, for example. We don't own printing presses, or fleets of delivery trucks. We don't have the elaborate editorial structures geared to producing products over a printing press." (via)
AOL Sessions has live videos from more than 150 different artists specially recorded for the series. Here are just a few of the artists on offer: Paul McCartney, Mary J. Blige, Modest Mouse, Tori Amos, Robyn, Tom Petty, Rhymefest, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Natasha Bedingfield, Cat Power, Toby Keith, Lil' Wayne, Robert Plant, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Kelly Rowland, Weezer and Brian Wilson. To the left of the videos there's a Q&A link that has short interview videos with the artists as well as behind the scenes footage and longer interviews.
According to ComScore, Google takes 59.8% of search traffic in the US, leaving Yahoo, MSN and smaller players to fight for the scraps. Pretty pie-chart here. Slightly different numbers are available from Compete and Hitwise, but Google still rules the roost.
Welcome to Mosaic Communications Corporation! It was 1994, and the World Wide Web as we know it today was about to be born. [more inside]
You can own your very own AOL 1.0 floppy disk for the low price of $4,995.00. Think this is absurd? Well, it's been done before.
It's official. The raw evil of AOL has joined forces with the unbridled hubris of Web 2.0 and killed Rock and Roll. I blame BoingBoing.
Think of Cancellation Calls as Sales Leads! Why did Vincent have such a hard time cancelling his AOL account? It turns out that his customer service rep was just following the AOL Retention Manual, a copy of which was sent to consumerist.com. Nicholas Graham, executive vice president of AOL Corporate Communications, had sent Vincent a formal apology (Google cache - right now his site's been pummeled beyond capacity) saying, "The employee in question violated our customer service guidelines and practices, and everything that AOL believes to be important in customer care." Um...really? New York Times article on the cancellation-call hoopla. via digg.
In which one man sets out to cancel his AOL account: the mp3 phone call (backup link), the blog post.
AOL launches in2tv. Why pay for Lost when you can be watching Wonder Woman for free? Maybe because you own a mac or hate streaming media. (Ok, so it's probably all over teh interwebs by now - but hey - free Wonder Woman!)
When you really, really want your email to arrive at its destination: now you gotta pay postage. Another brilliant, forward-looking idea for monetizing-the-InternetTM from the wizards at AOL and Yahoo.
Until recently solely targeting luddites thru the medium of nubile women with Matrix-style code flittering over their tits, AOL UK has changed tack with a batshit orgy of self-Godwinisation for their latest television advertisement. [partially Adobe Flash video]
We gave him crap. I'm not going to deny it. "An AOL chatroom named 'Romance — Older Men' was the scene of unbearable humiliation for one chatter, according to a new lawsuit."
Google buys a 5% stake in AOL. For ... one billion dollars.
Does AOL's acquisition of Weblogs, Inc. make financial sense? Yet another excellent quantitative analysis from Tristan Louis, who seems to spend a lot of time digging for numbers relating to the so-called blogosphere -- see also his granular analysis of what distinguishes A-list from B-list bloggers and another analysis more specifically examining Technorati links, as well as his analysis of the sort of cash Gawker is paying out which was discussed here earlier. Whatever the price investors don't seem to be hitting the panic button at the deal.
AOL is buying Weblogs, Inc! Reuters and Paidcontent.org say it's for at least $25 million.
"You waive any right to privacy." AOL has just updated the terms of service for Instant Messanger, which include agreeing to the new requirement that AOL owns everything you write, has the right to reproduce it at will, and that you waive all requirements for prior approval to do so.
The end of the endless September. "America Online on Tuesday confirmed that it will stop supporting access to newsgroups." Thus ends what many labeled the greatest plague upon the Internet, the (triple posting) barbarian horde that descended upon Usenet when AOL added Usenet access for its members.
This is when Usenet returns to utility, readability and civility. Right?
This is when Usenet returns to utility, readability and civility. Right?