Tuesday, September 21, 2004

AOL Sucks

I've maintained an opinion for years that AOL is one of the world's worst, most virulent soul-sucking corporations. Today I reaffirmed that opinion.

I signed up for AOL for Broadband a few weeks back -- it was the freebie I chose when I signed up at FreeiPods.com. I knew at the time that I was going over to the Dark Side. I had read the letter in PC Magazine [Aug 3, 2004] detailing one man's struggle to cancel a family member's AOL account after he died -- they ended up requesting a copy of his death certificate! I knew I'd get the hard sell, at least, but I was prepared to fight the good fight when it came time to tell them I was done.

It took all of my strength, but I prevailed. This after "David" used every trick in his little salesman's brain to entice me to stay -- telling me about their exclusive broadband content, musing about how I could not possibly have used the service enough to know what I'd be missing, knocking $10 off the monthly cost, and even (in an "oh, gosh, my boss is going to kill me, and it's coming out of my paycheck, but I just think you're so great I don't care" tone) offering to extend my free trial another two months. I interrupted him several times and informed him I wasn't interested in the hard sell, that it made AOL even less desirable to me when I heard him begging like that, and, eventually, asking him if we could hurry this up because I had a meeting in 7 minutes. To that he actually responded, "Well, if you knew you wouldn't have time to take care of this now, why did you call?"

I don't know if I was successful at supressing my laughter over the phone after that.

Anyway, "David" finally caved. I'm free once again.


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