Wed, 04 Jun 2003 15:32:28 GMT

AOL Subscriber Defections Continue, Topping 1 Million. There was a period during the mid-nineties when you could track the growing popularity of the internet by seeing how quickly it took for AOL to put out a press release announcing that they had signed up “yet another” million customers. They started coming quicker and quicker. Somehow, I get the feeling that AOL won’t be doing much to promote the same milestones on the way back down. A new report says that the defections from AOL’s dialup service have continued to grow, to the point where more than 1 million subscribers have ditched the service for greener pastures. It appears that AOL is getting beaten up from the top and the bottom. Many are leaving to sign up with broadband providers (since AOL did their best to ignore that market for as long as they possibly could). Others are realizing that they can pay less than half what they’re paying AOL to get online with discount providers like United Online. In both cases, people are discovering that the “walled garden” content that is only available to AOL subscribers just isn’t worth it.

Is AOL/Time Warner now a failing business model? How does MSN fit into this? WIll AOL/Time Warner go running to the government to get some sort of fix on the Internet to preserve its business?I love the comment that the content AOL provides may not be worth it. This is a decision I made 6 years ago. The cost for AOL made no sense when I saw how much I could get via the Internet. There was nothing compelling that made it worth paying for AOL.