Remember those days when you had to use your landline and select which AOL phone number to dial into in order to connect for insanely slow Internet access? For most of us, dial-up is just a distant hazy memory, but for a couple million Americans, it’s still how they get online. [More]
In the wake of that whole thing where the National Security Agency is reportedly snooping on people, a whole bunch of tech industry giants have banded together with privacy advocates to send a letter to the lawmakers and President Barack Obama asking for some transparency when it comes to government surveillance. [More]
You know that co-worker who’s always there when you come in in the morning and also when you leave at night? Maybe their work ethic isn’t as amazing as you think. Maybe they don’t even work there, and are squatting in the office as a free place to sleep, eat, work out, bathe, and work on launching their own tech startup. [More]
Even though we’re well past the age of AOL’s ubiquitous free trial CDs, the shrunken ISP giant still manages to coax hundreds of thousands of new customers into its antiquated dial-up service. According to its earnings report, the company added 200,000 new customers while losing 630,000 users in the past year. Shockingly, 3.5 million users still greet the internet with the nostalgic, ear-splitting sound of their landlines connecting to the internet. [More]
Bank of America may have lost this year’s Worst Company In America tournament by the narrowest of margins, but the results of a new customer service satisfaction survey put BofA at the head of the class when it comes to irking consumers. [More]
In an effort to put more original content on its network — and ad revenue in its pockets — AOL announced today that it will be purchasing popular news and opinion site HuffingtonPost.com for a princely sum of around $315 million. [More]
If you had a pulse and/or a mailbox in the ’90s, you received some AOL disks in the mail. They promoted a free trial, but everyone knows their real purpose: to have their labels peeled off and to be used for file storage. AOL eventually switched to read-only CDs, then switched to total irrelevance. But their familiar promotional tactic is back: adopted by tax preparers H&R Block to distribute their income tax software. [More]
A New Yorker profile this week details how 80% of AOL’s revenue comes from subscriptions, and, according to an ex-AOL exec, 75% of those users are people who subscribe to the dial-up service and don’t need. Basically we’re talking about folks who have another kind of ISP and don’t realize that you don’t need to pay AOL anymore if you’re just using it for email. The group can be further divided into two sub-groups, the old, and the lazy. Here’s a step-by-step process for canceling AOL and saving some cash while still keeping access to your AOL email account. [More]
Heather tells Consumerist that has AOL Instant Messenger installed on her smartphone, but doesn’t really use it. Lately, she’s left the program running more often, and made an alarming discovery: she was charged for 800 text messages, even though she didn’t send 800 text messages. The culprit? AIM, of course. Each IM to and from her phone was charged as a text message. [More]
Jim wants his AOL e-mail account to go away. It’s a free account, so billing isn’t an issue–he just wants it closed. This seems like a relatively straightforward request to anyone except AOL. He writes that the company somehow makes it impossible to cancel a free account. [More]
Close to severing ties with Time Warner and fresh off announcing that they plan to cull almost a third of their work force by the end of the year, AOL has debuted–why not?–a new logo and branding campaign. The new logo has a variety of backgrounds, but always the new name in a sans-serif font: “Aol.” Yes, with the period. [More]
Is AOL ripping off your mom? …or stepdad, or aunt, or neighbor? Mainstreet.com gets to the bottom of why AOL continues to charge many, many not-terribly-Internet-savvy customers for their AOL e-mail accounts. You know, the same AOL accounts that are actually offered for free and have been since 2006. [MainStreet]
Our reader Jennifer isn’t the only former Time Warner employee whose AOL account has risen from the dead, prompting collection notices and confusion. Wall Street Journal investing columnist Jason Zweig, a former Time Warner employee, found himself in precisely the same situation, and wrote about his epic customer service adventure.
Jennifer, like many people, one subscribed to AOL. She paid for the service originally, then received a free account while employed with Time Warner. Then she joined the 21st century and didn’t use AOL at all, but her free account remained in the system. Until AOL started billing her. Nine years later.
Back in Aug ’06, a researcher ended up releasing 500,000+ AOL user search histories online and all sort of heck broke loose. One of the pieces of fallout was the search queries of User 927, who displayed a fondness for mold, mange, orchids, beauty and the beast disney porn and testicle festivals. The only sensible thing to do, of course, was to make it into a play.