Dear AOL: Practically Everyone Says You Suck

Dear AOL is a website that has been set-up to educate and combat AOL’s recently announced email taxing system. The coalition that put-it together is so diverse it defies belief: MoveOn.org, RightMarch.com, Craigslist founder Craig Newmark, the United Farm Workers, the Gun Owners Society of America, Friends of the Earth etc. It’s worth visiting if you want to read a cogent rebuttal to AOL’s scummy money-making scheme to degrade the quality of the Internet.

Here’s an interesting passage from the site:

Perversely, the new two-tiered system AOL proposes would actually reward AOL financially for failing to maintain its email service. The chief advantage of paying to send CertifiedEmail is that it can bypass AOL’s spam filters. Non-paying customers are being asked to trust that after paid mail goes into effect, AOL will properly maintain its spam filters so only unwanted mail gets thrown away.

Is that really perverse though? Really, it’s just business as usual — board-room meetings where sausages-in-suits sit around contemplating how to change the parameters on a responsibility (consequently, in their minds, a business weakness) into an asset. In this case, AOL’s boardroom execs are looking for strategies to both fuck-off on their spam filters and make money for their laziness, in which case (if their customers don’t completely revolt over the prospect of an email tax) this is a win-win solution.