ISPs who suck, ISP Hall of Shame, Sprint, EarthLink, AOL, MSN

What are my alternatives?

ISPs who suck, ISP Hall of Shame, Sprint, EarthLink, AOL, MSN

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Not these losers


Sprint (NYSE: FON) has some wireless broadband solution with square satellite dishes that look like goofy traffic signs. It's also hideously expensive and Sprint won't install in condo/apartment complexes right now. I doubt I have adequate line of sight anyhow. I believe this service is called Sprint Broadband Wireless.

October 17, 2001 update - Placed on hold

Sprint has stopped accepting new customers for their fixed-wireless broadband service and has tabled plans to expand into new markets. Additionally, Sprint shutters its money-losing ION division amidst a series of cost-cutting moves (including laying off 6,000 employees). 129 FC points.

October 24, 2001 update

Sprint (NYSE: FON) closes at $19.48 per share after hitting a 52-week intraday low of $18.80.


Apparently EarthLink (NASDAQ: ELNK) is the only other major company other than PacHell to offer DSL in my area. Upload speed is limited to 128Kb, which is too pokey for hosting a web server. Also, it's a dynamically assigned IP address unless you pony up extra dollars for a static IP - about $65/month. Way too expensive. Blah.

Also, I think EarthLink is using Covad Communications as its DSL provider; Covad just dropped by bankruptcy court, so I'm sure EarthLink DSL users are a bit nervous (well, the ones on Covad lines, at least).

September 25, 2001 update

There's some talk about EarthLink's attractiveness as a takeover target, possibly by SBC Communications.

October 24, 2001 update

The media is reporting that EarthLink intends to push cable modem connectivity over the DSL it had been touting. Not good news for DSL and particularly Covad Communications.

March 28, 2002 update

53-year-old Reed Slatkin, an early investor in EarthLink plea bargained his way to a $254 million fraud charge agreement. Using a massive Ponzi scheme, he apparently solicited more than $593 million from 800+ investors including the Church of Scientology (ha ha), where he's a minister. Yeah, I think he's figured this religion thing out.

America Online

It will be a cold day in hell before I use either the world's largest ISP.

December 5, 2001

Gerald Levin, AOL Time Warner's CEO is retiring and handing the reins over to Richard Parsons come May 2002.

February 25, 2002

AOL is apparently shipping people unwanted merchandise and charging their credit cards without approval. Gee, isn't that illegal?

April 9, 2002

AOL chief Barry Schuler is given the boot.

April 25, 2002

AOL writes off $54.24 billion, the largest quarterly loss ever for a U.S. company.

July 18, 2002

Embattled COO and interim CEO Robert Pittman is out.

July 19, 2002

Shareholder lawsuit. Just another day in the life of AOL Time Warner.

August 2, 2002

The SEC is widening its investigation into AOL Time Warner's accounting practices, especially in its relationship with B2B software provider PurchasePro.

November 25, 2003 - So sue me

AOL is suing former executives for embezzlement. There's also talk of dropping AOL from the company name (Hello, MCI Worldcom!).


It will be a cold day in hell before I use the number two ISP.

October 28, 2001

A big brouhaha about Microsoft blocking browsers other than Internet Explorer at has raised the spectre of anti-trust again. Displaying utter and complete arrogance, Microsoft claimed that browsers like Opera did not comply with international Web standards when it is clearly Internet Explorer that tends to ignore Web standards and protocols.

Ultimately user complaints made Microsoft turn their portal back on to users of other browsers, but this is clearly an example of Microsoft's overwhelming dominance which allows it to use non-competitive business practices to quash its opponents.

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Last modified on Sun Feb 22 20:17:54 GMT 2004
Copyright © 1999-2004 Tara Hertz.
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ISPs who suck, ISP Hall of Shame, Sprint, EarthLink, AOL, MSN