The one time leader in the Internet revolution may finally succumb to the industry it helped bring to the world.
While they haven’t pulled the plug yet, AOL (the artist formerly known as America On Line) is now on life support, as the company continues to lay off workers and cut services at an alarming rate.
The division has since its merger with Time Warner been a drain on the industry giant. The last several years AOL has become a victim of spam, scams and smart competition not to mention the power of Google. AOL’s parent Time Warner is not doing much better and can not afford any hemorrhaging.
In an effort to stem the blood loss AOL has closed its Hometown web hosting service, photo sharing service, spam filters and spy ware programs after being unable to locate buyers for the once highly valued operations. AOL tried to sell its dial up service to Earth Link but the reported deal fell apart along with Time Warner’s stock price in October.
The highspeed ISP (Internet service provider) business was moved to sibling Time Warner Cable a few years ago, which followed on AOL’s current and cumbersome “free format” in hopes of cutting costs and rebuilding its client base.
Despite millions invested in news click teasers, AOL still trails the Internet landscape race.
The Internet is now the land of the “free” and the home of the “brave” as the economic downturn continues Americans are even less willing to pay for or be abused by popup ads and dead links for content they can find elsewhere.
While management turnovers continue the "new" AOL management claims the future is bright, but they may be drinking the same kool-aid as GM, Wachovia and AIG.