AOL Hates Hugs.

Although several hundred 14 year old boys lose their virginity to portly displaced man-children pretending to be women in AOL’s chat rooms every day, AOL has bigger fish to fry: the sleazy, nefarious hug. Or “((Hugs))” as it is known in AOL chat parlance, where ‘Hugs’ is replaced with the name of the recipient.

We won’t judge N. too much for typing anything as silly as “((Hugs))” to begin with. We’ve all been 12 year old girls at one point… Ben, in particular. Anyway, she’s the victim, slapped with a stern rebuke from AOL in the form of a Terms of Service notification.

N. invokes the constitution: “I find nowhere in the Constitution or among any state or federal law which says that it is illegal to give friends a hug.” Salient.

But more salient is this point: ” I am appalled and absolutely astounded that AOL would consider this a “room disruption” because someone was ignored for this very reason…the person enjoys starting trouble. To be told that because I admitted to giving hugs, that this TOS will remain as a black mark on my account is truly astounding. I PAY to come on here, I PAY to have the right to greet friends, etc.”

AOL’s black mark after the jump:

Dear Member,

America Online has been notified of a Terms of Service (TOS) violation in an AOL chat room committed by one of the screen names on your account. A written warning has been entered in your account record along with the information below.

On 07/28/06 20:05:56 Eastern the [Removed] screen name violated the TOS in the Milly Lounge chat room. The following is an excerpt from the chat room discussion:

[Removed]: ((Tracey)) ((Maureen)) ((Laine)) ((Peter)) ((Allie)) ((Gina)) ((Theresa)) ((Steve)) ((Colleen)) ((Bob)) ((Shar)) ((Bev)) ((Tim)) ((Linda)) ((JoAnn)) ((Gordie)) ((Vicki)) ((Marti))

When creating an AOL account, all members agree to abide by America Online`s TOS. These guidelines prohibit vulgar language, sexually explicit images, harassment, discussion of illegal activities, and/or other activities that may impair the enjoyment of our members.

Please take a moment to be sure all users of this account are familiar with Keyword: TOS. To learn more about how to protect your AOL account, we recommend you visit Keywords: Neighborhood Watch and Parental Controls.

If you have any comments or questions, please send e-mail to TOSGeneral.

Regards,

Grace
Community Action Team
America Online, Inc.

In the interest of being fair, it should be noted that a long string of names surrounded by a thousand parentheses violates my own personal Terms of Service of Non-Maudlin, Adult Conduct.

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. Jesse in Japan says:

    See? If you want to cancel your AOL account, just go around hugging people.

  2. You’d think AOL would be doing its damndest not to alienate the 23 subscribers that are left on its service.

  3. etinterrapax says:

    “Other activities that may impair the enjoyment of our members” sure covers a lot of ground. Maybe I can put the blot on some breastfeeding wonks while I’m at it. AOL messageboards are to competitive parenting what damp bread is to mold.

    Don’t worry, N. Being sent a letter like this from a company like AOL is an amusing compliment.