AOL and Time Warner to Merge
Monday January 10th, 2000
CNNfn is reporting that AOL and Time Warner have made public their plans to merge, with AOL shareholders getting 55% of the merged company, called AOL Time Warner.
Time Warner's boss will remain chief executive, and Steve Case of AOL will become the company's chairman.
As AOL rolls out their set-top and other technological initiatives this year, they can only benefit from being in the same corner as Time Warner, whose well known brands (HBO, Time Magazine, CNN, Turner Broadcasting Co.) could be brought into the fray for promotion and cross-marketing purposes. And since non-PC Internet devices will require not only cheap software, but scalable solutions (as Nokia and Intel have found), don't be surprised if you see Mozilla's name appearing in more and more press releases this year.
Thanks to onyo for the news.
#1 AOL is that rich?
Monday January 10th, 2000 5:56 AM
I had no idea they were worth more than Time-Warner. I wonder how this will affect relations between Time and Microsoft, if there are any.
I despise this deal.
At least now we know what Netscape 4.71 will bring. There will probably be a Shop@Pathfinder button next to the Shop@Netscape button.
Maybe by the time 4.72 is released, AOL Time-Warner will have acquired an entire country. Then we can have a Shop@France button.
Will Microsoft try to compete by acquiring their own country too? Will they pay people to leave France off of their maps?
I suppose because our television uses Time-Warner Cable, we will soon have AOL available through the cable modems. I actually enjoyed the concept of the cable modem as a means of escaping AOL.
Maybe I should stop typing now before AOL acquires me and stamps their logo on my chest.
Dude!! have you heard of Paranoia? I think you really need to see a doctor..... a Psychiatrist would be a good idea. Next time, remember to take your medication before you post a message.
#11 Re: Re: AOL is that rich?
Monday January 10th, 2000 4:26 PM
I am female. Stop calling me "dude". You go to hell.
Sheesh ... that guy was really tightly wound. I thought your post was hysterical.
#15 Thank You
Monday January 10th, 2000 7:59 PM
I am glad SOMEBODY understood my post.
#17 i donno (i like)
by beg <email@example.com>
Monday January 10th, 2000 10:21 PM
Well, i guess i like this deal, because i'm a AOL shareholder. I was even a Netscape shareholder, too.
But put that aside. As a investor I think this is good, because AOL was worth around 200 billion dollars. I had no idea how in the world they would fulfil this huge market cap. Yahoo is worth 100 billion.
All of these internet stocks will be either be merged, disappear, or bought-out. That bubble everyone was talking about is not going to just pop. We truly are in a mega bull market. This is a great time to be living in the United States and to be a investor
#20 Re: i donno (i like)
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 2:07 AM
Surely, it is good, from the perspective of an AOL investor. I was speaking from the perspective of an Internet and cable user.
I don't know, AOL stock has dropped about 20% since the announcement. I for one am not happy.
Sure, AOL was overvalued, but when the internet bubble pops AOL is going to get hammered again, so why take a hit now too?
Diffrent regions of the US or other english speaking countries use words in diffrent ways. Where I am dude can refer to any person not just a male.
Well, since AOL has been clamering to get access to cable networks for the past year, I guess they found out that the best way to get it was to just buy the whole enchilada!
#3 Re: open access
Monday January 10th, 2000 8:58 AM
If an ad pops up on my television screen, saying "Try AOL 5.0", I am switching to satellite TV.
God damn, you have a major problem with AOL. AOL isn't that stupid online serivce anymore. Matter of fact, AOL is a media company which 98% of it's revenues come from the TW devision. I guess you wouldn't be able to read any Time Magizines either or TW movies, huh?
AOL has moved on. This war between Microsoft and AOL is dumb, because AOL could careless about Bill Gates. Steve Case and Leivy have other plans, which have nothing to do with Microsoft.
Oh, by the way, rumor has it that AOL TimeWarner WILL allow other ISPs to offer internet access over TW's pipes. Everyone was saying how AOL wouldn't open up if they were AT&T. Well, eat it!
I can't stand AT&T and their CEO Mr. Armstrong
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 2:51 AM
Yes, I have "a major problem with AOL". I have "a major problem" with Time-Warner too, but my personal contempt for these corporate divisions is not the issue.
Do you really think I care about Time Magazine? I can read it if I choose, although I choose not to. I suppose I have watched Time-Warner movies. Why would I not be able to do these things?
I do not care who wins the "war" between AOL and Microsoft. I hope the Netscape Web browser regains its dominance over Internet Explorer, but I have no good feelings about its owner.
If AOL allows other companies to use its cable lines for Internet services, I think that could be good. Maybe if this actually happens, somebody will "eat it". If AOL forces these companies to promote AOL in exchange for use of the cable lines then "it" will not be so tasty.
#30 to danielhill
by beg <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 3:29 PM
Here ya go danielhill
I have not read it, but it talks about AOL is going to open it's line. Steve Case has even said that he thinks it's good for the industry if AOL/TW open up. The CEO says they will do it.
Gee..look around. Aol doesn't limit competition. You have a choice between using an ISP or AOL. Microsoft on the other hand, kills it's competitors just like Standard Oil did back in the day. Aol NEVER went after Earthlink or MindSpring, when those companies advertised that their ISP service was better than AOL. AOL did nothing. Microsoft on the other hand attacks their competitors revenues just like Standard Oil did.
MS has limited choice by being SO dominate. No one wants to compete with them, which is bad for the consumer.
AOL isn't limiting competition, and when this new merger done, AOL will allow other companies to offer internet service. If you hate AOL, then you probably hate At&t more, because At&t isn't allowing other ISPs to use their cable lines. What's your opinion on ATT?
#33 So i'm not danielhill, but...
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 7:22 PM
AT&T promised long distance services. When we paid for this service, we were able to make long distance calls. There were no advertisements forced on us, no additional "features" we did not request, and the service actually worked.
In order for me to despise AT&T as much as AOL, AT&T's lines would have to be busy half of the times I wanted to make a long-distance call, my phone would have to say "You've got long distance!" every time I received a call, some of the long distance services would have to be unavailable on a regular basis, the phone calls would have to be non-standard and incompatible with the phone systems of non-AT&T customers, and there would have to be a Shop@ATT button on my telephone.
If you are referring to AT&T's denial of high-speed Internet options to other companies, I have mixed feelings about that issue. If I paid a large amount of money to create something and somebody wanted me to share it with them for free, so they could compete against me, I would probably feel cheated. However, I do not believe AT&T should be the only company to have use of its high-speed Internet access, and they probably do not deserve that position.
>>If I paid a large amount of money to create something and somebody wanted me to share it with them for free, so they could compete against me<<
I would free cheated, too. If i remember correctly, Aol never wanted to open up for free. Aol said they could charge them, but it had to be a reasonable rate.
Second, Aol paid more for TimeWarner than both of AT&T's purchases of TCI and MediaOne. Yet Aol is going to open up. Hmm...which company is more greedy?
Steve Case even called the CEO of ATT to let him know they were going to merger.
#46 Re: Tanyel
Wednesday January 12th, 2000 11:21 PM
I like when you say my name.
AOL has not shared its lines yet, and definitely has not shared them for free. If it does, I want one of those free connections in my home.
If I were to compare the greed of AOL with the greed of AT&T, I would consider AOL's sacrifice of customer service in order to gain new customers.
They should have refunded money for the unlimited access they promised but did not deliver. If they did refund money, my check has not arrived yet.
AOL has the nerve to promise unlimited access and then harrass people to sign off every 10 minutes. They also had the nerve to offer people busy signals and slow service, and then raise their price. They also convinced people to download a 15 megabyte web browser, some of them through a 56k modem or even 14.4k, only to add a Shop@Netscape button. That is pure AOL evil. I am glad there are plans to make the Netscape 5 interface completely customizable. Maybe I will find a way to get rid of the Shop@Netscape button. That will probably be the one element that is hard-coded into the browser.
I am think your feelings about AT&T may be justified. Maybe AT&T is evil too, but they are obviously not as good at it as AOL.
#23 Re: Tanyel...
by danielhill <email@example.com>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 6:43 AM
-quote- Oh, by the way, rumor has it that AOL TimeWarner WILL allow other ISPs to offer internet access over TW's pipes. Everyone was saying how AOL wouldn't open up if they were AT&T. Well, eat it! -unquote-
It's RUMOUR. Personally, I can't see it happening. AOL and TW are far too greedy.
If AOL is going to offer their services via time Warners cable lines than what will roadrunner do? I really liked rr, great service far better than my experiences with AOL.
Anyway, this will give a boost to AOL's marketing ability, but I have no idea what Time Warner is etting out of this.
#5 What Time Warner gets
Monday January 10th, 2000 11:30 AM
They get AOL. They get to part of a huge company. They get exposure for all of their properties through all of AOL's and vice versa, and not have to pay advertising revenues to get it. They get to offer AOL to all their cable subscribers, and a shortcut to online content.
I used to be an AOL hater, and they have done a few things that aren't all that great, and their e-mail client sucks, but I now see AOL as one of the main drivers of the Internet revolution, and I think this deal will accelerate that further. I am also very excited to see some of the things that come from the Gateway/AOL partnership. :) Oh yeah, bigtime.
#24 Re: What Time Warner gets
by danielhill <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 6:49 AM
-quote- I used to be an AOL hater, and they have done a few things that aren't all that great, and their e-mail client sucks, but I now see AOL as one of the main drivers of the Internet revolution, and I think this deal will accelerate that further. -unquote-
What, by offering new users crud? That disconnects you after 15 minutes with simplistic but cryptic messages (Packet Reflection occured, or The host has stopped acknowleging).
IMO AOL is ruining the Internet. I know someone who never touched a computer before, used the AOL 100 hour trial and decided she hates the Internet and computers. All the perverts and the slow speed. Then I logged my ISP account on her machine, and showed her around.
And anybody that thinks settop boxes are the future need their heads checked. I'm sorry, you cannot use the Internet sitting 3 metres from a blurry TV picture.
#6 Battle Lines Being Drawn
Monday January 10th, 2000 1:20 PM
AOL ISP and content, Netscape browser and Netcenter content, Sun servers hardware and software, RoadRunner ISP, TimeWarner Cable, Sports Illistrated, People, Time, Turner content from CNN to Cartoon Network to Turner Classic Movies, Warner and Newline movies as well as HBO and CInemax, Warner Music and Electra Music....man. And don't forget AIM and ICQ and partnering with Real and Winamp and AMD (RR ads tout Athlon)......wow. Am I missing anything?
M$ has met its match.
(posted with mozilla 1/10/00)
#7 What if AOL were working on an OS? n/t
Monday January 10th, 2000 2:08 PM
#8 Maybe they can purchase Amiga.
by rgelb <email@example.com>
Monday January 10th, 2000 2:46 PM
#22 Re: What if AOL were working on an OS? n/t
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 3:09 AM
It would be the first operating system that is shipped to everybody's house on a monthly basis. It would probably be time-limited shareware, with the first 250 hours free.
Instead of shoving Internet Explorer down everybody's throat, AOL would be an "integrated" part of the system, and it would be loaded constantly, even when the user was not online. The file manager would be replaced with that stupid file cabinet. Any zip file, with more than one file in it, would be converted to a mime file for no apparent reason.
Every time the user booted the computer, it would say "You've got software!" Every time they shut down the computer, it would say "Goodbye!"
There would be a Shop@aol button on the desktop, along with a Shop@netscape button, a Shop@Time button, and a Shop@France button.
Every 15 minutes, the computer would stop working and say "A request from the system has taken longer than expected." This would be followed by a prompt, unconditional shutdown.
#25 Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
by danielhill <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 6:55 AM
-quote- M$ has met its match. -unquote-
You reckon? Microsoft have massive weapons in their arsenal. Windows. AOL doesnt even install on Windows 2000. And I doubt the proprietary piece of junk wont install on Windows Millennium either.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't new drivers in Windows 2000 need to be approved and signed by Microsoft, or a big dirty warning appears? AOL works as a network device driver.
All MS has to do is fail AOL. Say they override security or something. AOL will have no Windows client, AOL relies on the dicky little TV boxes, AOL dies and takes TW with it. Man I love it!
#27 Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 7:45 AM
And with AOL dead, Mozilla dies. Oh, sure, it'd still be literally out there for people to touch, but the following would be gone:
2/3 of the coding workforce, putting out 4/5 of the code The servers hosting the project EVERY public sentiment that was in Mozilla's favor before
#29 Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 9:58 AM
If Microsoft could have killed AOL, it would have happened by now. They tried to compete with their Internet service, and failed. They tried to compete with their instant messenging software and failed again.
If what I have read is the case, then it seems Microsoft's last resort is to make their software malicious in a way that will prevent AOL from running properly. Resorting to such a blatant tactic is a sign of Microsoft running out of options.
If AOL were to die, assuming there were no licensing problems, Netscape and Mozilla would still survive. It would probably reside on an open source server, such as those of SourceFourge.
Even if AOL's internet dominance was decreased, their newly acquired television dominance would keep them alive. It would be interesting to see Microsoft keep AOL off of all new versions of Windows. It would also be interesting to see what happens to MSNBC and all of those channels, which used to show Microsoft advertisements.
Let the battle begin.
#32 Re: Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 7:08 PM
MSNBC is partly owned by Microsoft so they couldn't stop MS commercials from airing on that station. The only way they could is to stop carrying MSNBC all together. And that's just bad business. No company would put it's intire business at risk just to be vindictive. And lets not forget who has all the power here either!!! If AOL get's mean MS might just decide to put a little bug into Windows that prevents AOL from working all together, oops!!! Considering that 95% of all AOL users are Windows based this would hurt AOL alot more then AOL refusing to play MS's cabel advertisements. MS is definatly the superpower in this little fued and AOL has to be very careful or MS just might decide to flex those huge muscels they have. Think about it!
#34 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 9:49 PM
I do not think losing MSNBC would kill Time-Warner Cable. I think it would kill MSNBC.
I think if Microsoft creates a "bug" to make AOL stop working, Microsoft will be setting itself up for its next lawsuit, which AOL might win since they are just as rich and unscrupulous as Microsoft.
With Time-Warner, AOL could survive without being an Internet service provider at all.
There is no "bug" Microsoft can create that cannot be circumvented. If Microsoft keeps creating new "bugs", people will realize the bugs are created solely to stop AOL. As I said before, if millions of people upgrade Windows and it abruptly destroys their connection to the Internet, the ones with cognitive ability will blame Microsoft and demand that the problem be fixed.
I have been thinking about this.
Die, Microsoft and AOL Time-Warner. I do not care which one dies first. Just die.
#37 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
by danielhill <email@example.com>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 11:04 PM
-quote- Die, Microsoft and AOL Time-Warner. I do not care which one dies first. Just die. -unquote-
Let 'em both die. Let Linux and Mozilla rule the Internet!!!!!!
#43 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
Wednesday January 12th, 2000 7:07 PM
"I think if Microsoft creates a "bug" to make AOL stop working, Microsoft will be setting itself up for its next lawsuit, which AOL might win since they are just as rich and unscrupulous as Microsoft."
Two things here. Nuber one AOL is no where near as rich as MS. They may be a huge, powerful company, but they can't compare in overall assets (Gates is worth more then AOL). Second MS could introduce a bug into Windows that would prevent AOL from working and just claim it's a networking mistake and that they are working on it. And while AOL is trying to work around this bug they would lose customers left and right to companys like Earthlink, Efortress and all those other companys who have took up the practice of publicly bashing AOL as being slow and unreliable.
I see it this way... If AOL died tomarrow a lot of people would be mad, but the internet would live on. However if MS died tomarrow the world of personal computing would be devistated! The only real consumer level OS out there besides Windows is MAC and it won't run on a x86 PC.
And don't even try and say Linux is consumer level because consumers would much rather deal with an OS that crashes on a regular basis then to give up the user friendliness and hardware compatibility they get from Windows 9x. Just look at Windows NT it is way more stable then 9x (and looks almost identacle) but yet it is not nearly as popular because it's just not as user friendly as 9x.
#45 Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Dra
Wednesday January 12th, 2000 11:00 PM
Ho hum. Regardless of the "worth" of Bill Gates, AOL Time-Warner could still afford a lawsuit, and they are still just as unscrupulous and Troll-like as Microsoft.
Regardless of popular opinion, AOL users as a whole are not absolutely inept. They have enough sense to understand that if AOL stops working immediately after their latest Windows "critical update", it is probably due to Microsoft and not AOL. I believe a judge would also have enough sense to realize this.
Nobody cares about AOL's content. For goodness sake, nobody cares. The biggest draw is the socialization. Every AOL user I know would be willing to do whatever it takes to maintain this contact, and I believe they are even more loyal than Netscape loyalists.
The process would probably start with a phone call to AOL tech support, at which point some farm animal would answer. Although the tech-support entity probably knows nothing about computers or AOL, that chicken (or cow or whatever) would be trained to talk and manage to utter the words, "It's all Microsoft's fault..." This would be followed by some pre-recorded message from a "live" tech-support officer, which would explain the entire situation. Because farm animals are much more reputable than Microsoft tech support, the AOL users would be convinced, and they would avoid windows updates, forcing Microsoft to work harder to corrupt their software. Also, people outside of AOL would know what Microsoft was doing and this would hurt Microsoft.
If Microsoft died tomorrow, my computer would still work.
With Microsoft dead, it would not take long for Macintosh and Linux to take its place. There would probably be other companies creating operating systems and there would be many initial public offerings. I would probably create some software to take advantage of the presumed death of Windows too. I would also type some very nasty comments about Microsoft and get flamed by Microsoft fans, or maybe there would be no Microsoft fans.
Linux has the potential to become popular with people who are used to Windows. It will seem even more familiar if Linus Torvalds says "Linux will solve all of your problems and do everything you want." That usually sells new versions of Windows.
Maybe Windows NT is not so popular because it requires twice as much memory to run any software. If people only cared about usability then Macintosh would outsell Windows. Maybe that is why every new version of windows is more of an imitation of the Mac interface. Maybe "millenium" will have a flying window logo where the apple should be.
#36 Re: Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
by danielhill <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 11:00 PM
-quote- If AOL were to die, assuming there were no licensing problems, Netscape and Mozilla would still survive. It would probably reside on an open source server, such as those of SourceFourge. -unquote-
Mozilla would, yes. I can't see Mozilla dying. It's like Linux - a strong alternative to commercial software. People will always want that.
#38 Re: Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
by danielhill <email@example.com>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 11:10 PM
I reckon most of the programmers who worked on Mozilla, even if AOL went down the tubes, would still work on it. I think the programmers Ive read about would be more than willing to see this thing through.
Are you sure that 100 engineers who would suddenly be without the major source of their income would still give a rat's hind end about a browser?
I sincerely doubt it.
Sure, a goodly number of them would probably help on it while acquiring other employers, but it's a pipe dream to think they'd be developing for it full-time (or even half-time), as they do today.
#28 Re: Re: Battle Lines Being Drawn
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 9:45 AM
I doubt AOL's millions of existing customers will suddenly disappear when Windows 2000 is released. AOL will not die if their software is not installed on Windows 2000 computers. Also, if users upgrade to Windows 2000 and their Internet software suddenly stops working, I think that might be more harmful to Microsoft than AOL.
I also do not think Microsoft will break any records with the sales of whatever "Millenium" is. I think people have learned their lesson from the Windows 98 "second edition".
I also believe, if necessary, AOL could find a way around being classified as a driver, if that is a problem.
Finally, Time-Warner survived without AOL, and I doubt it will die if AOL becomes unpopular. I would be happy if it did die, but that is probably just another of my fantasies which will not become reality anytime soon.
WOW Finanly!!! I sugested a setatop box to AOL several years ago when Web-TV was still just a concept, and network PCs were all the rage. Although I don't perticularly like AOL, I think it's perfect for beginners who don't understand the internet. And set atop boxes are a perfect for beginner who don't understand computers. I think they should even take it a step further and port AOL to video game consels like Dreamcast and Playstation2 (which both have built in modems). That way they can send out millions of those free CDs to video game magazine subscribers and get a potentialy large chuck of an unclaimed audiance.
I don't see how anyone could be upset that AOL is getting bigger. I say let them get bigger, that way they will have more money that they might throw our way.
#19 Re: Good for AOL!!!
Monday January 10th, 2000 11:07 PM
There's really nothing wrong with AOL except its lousy e-mail client. That will change when they integrate Mozilla.
Actually my biggest pet-peve with AOL was the speed. Even on a 56k connection the internet seems to crawl. Other than that I liked there content, and I never got a busy signal in my area (I guess it was a problem in bigger cities). Oh one more complaint is the excessive amout of junk mail I get in that account, but thats not realy their fault. Like I said I'm all for them getting bigger because it might allow them a bigger budget to fund Mozilla for the next go around.
#35 Good for AOL, but not good
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 10:06 PM
I did not like the content, and still do not.
I think the junk mail is the fault of AOL. They never should have made people's screen names the same as their e-mail addresses. This made it impossible to chat or have a user profile without giving away an e-mail address to the bots designed to collect AOL screen names. Troll AOL scavengers... Die AOL vultures. This could have been prevented by alowing e-mail addresses that are different from the screen names, like Prodigy did. I never received junk mail through Prodigy. Also, AOL's e-mail filters are too limited. They should give up and allow people to use separate e-mail software through POP3 or IMAP. Of course they will not do that because then they will not be able to include their advertisement banners with every message.
I think they should have two voices. One voice could say "You've got mail!" and the other could say "You've got junk mail!"
#14 Clash of the Titans?
Monday January 10th, 2000 7:38 PM
As I'm sure many of you have been wondering: will the deal have a positive or negative effect upon the rest of us mettlesome peons of the Internet? AOL could force M$ into some sort of *competition* and force them to introduce actual *features* to their products, and lower prices [that ought to hurt their budget ;) ]. The negative side of the whole deal is that it might simply create another Microsoft, making the landscape similar to what it is now, but with greater incompatability. Hopefully AOL will at least take some of the heat off of M$'s other enemies (Linux, maybe eventually mozilla). As long as I don't have to hear "You've got CNN", the deal might just work out.
#26 Re: Clash of the Titans?
by danielhill <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Tuesday January 11th, 2000 7:00 AM
-quote- AOL could force M$ into some sort of *competition* and force them to introduce actual *features* to their products, and lower prices [that ought to hurt their budget ;) ]. -unquote-
What, like AOL innovate. AOL are worse than MS. They are still using the old propietary protocols they did 10 years ago. Their 'innovation' is selling personal details to companies.
Well i guess this means I don't have to worry so much about Microsoft controlling the media. And the other good thing is that MS would have to worry about this big guy, AOL Time Warner, instead of focusing on crushing all the little guys. And vice versa.