Painting deckchairs

Painting deckchairs

: AOL CEO Jonathan Miller tries to tout the wonders of AOL’s soon-to-be-public portal (a decade-late strategy, also known as conceding defeat) in a New York Times interview:

The intent, Mr. Miller said, is to differentiate AOL.com from Yahoo by having a distinctive “voice” tuned to popular culture. The site’s main screens are meant to have the chatty personality of a morning talk show or women’s magazine, focusing on celebrities, health topics and the news of the day, drawing users to participate through instant polls and links to AOL’s chat rooms.

“The day I thought we nailed it was the day that Terri Schiavo died,” Mr. Miller explained. Yahoo and most other portals highlighted the story with headlines copied from news agency obituaries that read something like, “Terri Schiavo dead at 41,” he recalled.

“The AOL headline was, ‘Terri Schiavo’s sad story comes to an end,’ ” noted Mr. Miller, who said the AOL version better reflected the emotion of the case.

That’s just pathetic.

Oh, gawd, I wish I had sold my Time Warner stock before AOL came along and my FU money said FU.

  • http://www.advancinginsights.com/mybiz/?q=summary_of_site jim wilde

    LMAO The more businesses we try to sell our services/tools to – Ideascape, the more they seem to think and act like aol time warner ten years ago. “…a decade-late strategy, also known as conceding defeat”. I hope i don’t have to wait ten years!

  • http://carpundit.typepad.com carpundit

    I’m glad my wife left AOL just in time. They forced departing employees to exercise their non-qualified stock options within 90 days, which we were pissed about at the time. But looking back, we’re grateful.
    We have a little TWX left. It’s sure to climb when they shut down AOL, or sell it off for the real estate value in NoVa.

  • Chris

    God bless Steve Case.
    All the hue and cry from the press and ex-TW employees is silly — The reality is that AOL bought TW as a hedge, and propped up 50% of the value for over a year, whilst every other tech stock went to zero. As a former AOL stockholder, he did the right thing for his shareholders (at the obvious expense of TW)and should be lauded for that.
    Also, as I recall, TW execs got to insta-vest the day the deal was announced (while AOL execs didn’t) for a 25% premium over what it was trading before — shoulda sold when there was a big pop :-)

  • http://www.projectnothing.com Nathan Lanier

    Heh. This reminds me of a post I made a few days ago about AOL’s “new” free e-mail. Welcome to the 19th century.

  • http://www.projo.com/blogs/shenews Sheila Lennon

    ” ‘Terri Schiavo’s sad story comes to an end,’ ”
    What’s wrong with ‘Terri Schiavo’s sad story ends’?
    Oh, right, put it that way and somebody might ask HOW it ended.