May 2, 1997 |
America Online, CompuServe and Prodigy Services on Thursday settled government allegations that supposed "free trial" offers resulted in unexpected charges to consumers. The Federal Trade Commission voted 5-0 for the agreement requiring that--among other things--companies get written authorization from consumers before tapping their checking accounts electronically. No fines were levied against the three. AOL, CompuServe and Prodigy said in statements that they are now complying with the law.
April 2, 1997 |
America Online, the largest consumer online service, may be considering a bid for No. 2 CompuServe, the company that launched the commercial online business. Rumors of AOL's interest in CompuServe swept financial markets Tuesday after a New York securities research firm, Wall Street Strategies, said a deal may be in the works. The report sent CompuServe shares up $1.14 to close at $11 in Nasdaq trading. The rumors also boosted AOL's stock by $3.25 to $45.75 on the New York Stock Exchange.
November 22, 1996 |
CompuServe Inc., one of the pioneers of the computer online services business, said Thursday that competition has become so intense that it's abandoning efforts to chase a consumer mass market. CompuServe executives said they doubted their service's ability--and that of rivals such as America Online Inc. and Microsoft Corp.--to make money by aggressively recruiting subscribers through free trial offers and bargain pricing.
August 29, 1996 |
H&R Block Inc. on Wednesday postponed the spinoff of its remaining stake in CompuServe Corp., hoping to raise the stock price before giving the money-losing unit to shareholders. To separate CompuServe from its tax-preparation business, H&R Block intends to improve CompuServe's performance by cutting costs and stemming customer defections to cheaper Internet services.
August 12, 1996 |
Last week I looked at America Online's new version 3.0 interface, and one reader sent e-mail saying, in effect, "What about CompuServe?" Well, who says this column isn't interactive? It so happens that CompuServe has just released a beta, or testing, version of its new version 3.0 interface. As a long-standing CompuServe user and fan, I was eager not just to try the new program, but also to find out what CompuServe is doing to counteract the phenomenal success of America Online and the Internet.