Wednesday, March 01, 2006

AOL has only itself to blame

CNET "America Online has suffered two major PR broadsides in just the last few days, one over its dial-up price increases and the other for its plans to charge fees for guaranteed e-mail delivery.

The clumsy handling of the changes were reminiscent of another fee change a decade ago that drew a class-action lawsuit filed by the attorneys general of 19 states. Although that case was eventually settled, the company lost valuable trust among subscribers at a critical juncture in Internet growth.
The reasons behind AOL's recent moves make sense from a business perspective--but it needs to pay more attention to its image among consumers, which is particularly important to the family-oriented company. Before it makes any more changes that so directly affect their subscribers, executives may want to review some of the company's own history for some valuable lessons. "

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