7 Problems Only Early Internet Users Understand

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Trivial Diversions

7 Problems Only Early Internet Users Understand

The internet has been around for over twenty years now, enough to go through its own series of revolutions and evolutions. Those of us old enough to remember the earliest days of the internet remember these excruciating first-world problems we were all forced to endure simply to search the web. Here are some things that, thankfully, we do not need to worry about in 2015…

Dial up – Remember that ear-shredding hissing and buzzing noise that would take longer the more anxious you were about getting on the World Wide Web? And once you finally got through with that noise, you would have to wait for seemingly endless connections to be made so you could scroll through a page at the lightning speed of about three minutes per… Thankfully, wireless has rid us of that nonsense.

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Tying up the “land line” – Speaking of dial up, that used to have to go through your land line at home. What’s a land line? Well, kids, back in the 90s literally everyone used to have phones in their house attached to the wall! And that’s how you would connect to the internet. Then, if some annoying relative called the house, you might be kicked offline. Really.

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Paying for AOL – In the earliest days of the internet, AOL charged customers $9.95 for five hours of internet access. Five hours sounds like nothing (because it is now), but back in 1993 AOL had a press release explaining their reasoning: “America Online expects that 90 percent of its customers will not use more than 5 hours per month so they’ll just pay a fixed rate of $9.95. Heavy users will be able to purchase additional online time (beyond the initial 5 free hours) at the rate of $3.50 per hour.” Five, Hours. A Month…

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What’s e-commerce? – Shopping online was sort of a thing in the early days, but nowhere near what it is today. E-commerce has become a substitute for shopping out in society, hence the shrinking and closing of malls across the country. While Amazon did exist in 1994, they mainly only sold books.

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Buffering… Buffering… – Just loading an image used to take a small act of God. Videos were another story. I remember loading a movie trailer from that movie’s website (because there was no YouTube) and waiting around the house maybe an hour before the final two-minute trailer ended uploading. I wouldn’t even have considered starting it before the loading was complete because the images would be pixelated beyond comprehension and I would get that dreaded “buffering” message about a thousand times.

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Chat Rooms – Chat rooms were the place to go to find people with your same interests in whatever subject you wanted, be it movies, music, sports, politics, or romance. Most of the time, however, it was just a place to get in fights with people like JetsFan0587 and BiffBush69. Thankfully, we have places like Facebook now, where all the comments are nice and well thought out.

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Internet Explorer – Yes, Internet Explorer used to be the best option for browsing online. Let that sink in for a minute.

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Related topics AOL, Buffering, dial up, e-commerce, Early Internet Terms, Internet Explorer, land line
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