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America Online- Don't do me any favors

My very first internet provider was AOL and for over 12 years I stuck with them exclusively. In 2006 I left AOL(and went through merry hell to cancel my membership as others have. AOL membersip can be compared to being in the Mafia. Once in, you can never leave, or so this company thinks. A recent legal settlement is supposed to have changed things but I don't know if it has.) and got Bell South DSL. I'm still with Bell South or rather AT&T after that company bought Bell South, but resubbed to AOL. It's my backup internet provider, which is a good thing because AT&T every so often goes offline down here in Florida.

One thing I liked about AOL was its multiple mailboxes. Since 2002, I've had six in operation. One is my main account, one is for my wife, and 4 others I use for mailing lists and other activities I'm involved with. These include Chess by email, webfiction writing, a cancer support group, and a support group for fathers who lost a child, a list for a game I used to actively play etc etc. Now I get mail because of Wizbang, I really need these mailboxes more than ever.

This morning I signed onto the computer and went to check my email. I did this on my desktop, which has AT&T only. I went to check my main mail account, and my writing account simultaneously(For right at this time I'm in the process of completing my latest sci-fi/fantasy webfiction. I'm emailing daily with someone who is proofing my story and another person who is giving me English to Japanese translations) using IE and Firefox at the same time. After signing in, a popup screen comes up. Still half asleep, I click the ok in regards to the popup for my writing account. Guess what my reward is? All my old email, instead of getting put in a separate account once opened, gets kept with my new mail. What the @#% ^!?

Fortunately I learned from my mistake and didn't repeat it for my main AOL account. That would be incredibly annoying, since that account gets a couple of hundred email a day sometimes. Since AOL saves your email for 30 days before it disappears, I could have thousands of emails in that account easily by the time the 30 days is up.

AOL supposedly said my email storage has been increased, yes but the process of finding emails that are important to me has become five times more difficult. Fortunately the damage is limited to my writing account, which because I don't always actively do that activity, has most of the email sent to it deleted.

Honestly this was a very dumb idea of this internet provider. Maybe I should dump AOL again(I can keep my email accounts) to show my displeasure. Then I'd have to undergo torture to get my membership cancelled again. Sometimes I live up to my blog handle, The Florida Masochist.


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Comments (9)

I don't know why anyone wou... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

I don't know why anyone would punish themselves with AOL. The AOL/Compuserve/Mindspring paradigm is over.

You might consider getting a webhosting account, such as with DreamHost. I have been with them for a few years now and I am happy. I also have a Lunarpages account that I have not been nearly as happy with.

I suggest this because you get myriad benefits for what I believe is a lower cost than AOL. Mailing lists, free domain name registration [having your personal domain is a nice plus], unlimited email accounts, massive storage space, and the list goes on.

Your comment about AT&T reminded me of something. My memory is a little sketchy, but wasn't it in the not-too-distant past the AT&T and BellSouth were forced to split into separate companies over anti-trust monopoly allegations? Now they get government approval and recombine into one company again. Doesn't the whole thing seem like a stupid bureaucratic exercise in futility?

Jeff, on the AT&T question,... (Below threshold)

Jeff, on the AT&T question, you are right on.

As far as the post:?????????? ww

Why are you doing this to y... (Below threshold)

Why are you doing this to yourself? I dumped paid AOL service in 1997, and have been with Comcast internet since '02. Just about every ISP out there today offers multiple e-mail accounts. You can still keep your AOL screen name for their free Instant Messenger service. I have 4 different Comcast addresses (3 in regular use), and also maintain free Yahoo and Gmail accounts; I also recently reactivated web-access AOL mail (free as well), though I don't use it much at all.

I wish I had access to Comc... (Below threshold)

I wish I had access to Comcast, it isn't available out here! We can only get satellite internet service, too expensive for my budget. I use peoplepc as my provider, never had a bit of problem out of it and it's only $10.95. I just use yahoo(unlimited storage) and gmail for my mail services.

I am still on dial up AOL. ... (Below threshold)

I am still on dial up AOL.

However, the assumption that I'm still single at 47 years old and living in my mother's basement because of my inter-web-net access choice is completely and utterly false.

My mom let me convert the garage in to an apartment.

So there to all you would be critics.

One word: Gmail. The stora... (Below threshold)
kbiel Author Profile Page:

One word: Gmail. The storage is more than you'll ever need and growing daily. You can use Google's search engine to search your mail regardless of how it is organized. And if you like multiple addresses, you can use + (plus) addressing where you give your normal address followed by a plus and some tag of your choosing. Then you can easily filter on the tag (so [email protected] would become [email protected] for your writing list).

good grief. Get rid of Ame... (Below threshold)

good grief. Get rid of America Offline and use a better provider.

And the need for multiple e-mails is easy to solve, even if you don't get e-mails through your ISP. I have old Yahoo and Hotmail e-mail accounts as well as accounts through earthlink/sprynet which was my internet provider for some time. (I upgraded to cable modem, but kept the old earthlink account as a back up and e-mail since I've had that account and e-mail since 1997).

And as for keeping your e-mail seperate. Microsoft Outlook actually does a good job of downloading e-mails into seperate folders if you take the time to set it up, although it does mean that you are downloading the e-mails onto your hard drive. If you really have as many different e-mails as you claim it might be effective though.

Don't forget .mac mail acco... (Below threshold)

Don't forget .mac mail accounts. Oh, you have a PC. Sorry.

Gmail. Get it, us... (Below threshold)


Get it, use it, love it.






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