AOL, once the king of the online world, has suffered a severe decline in popularity and influence. So much so that the company is now seriously considering ditching its premium businesses and putting all of its marketing oomph behind free Web-based products.
Rumors have surfaced for a while about the plan. An article in Monday's New York Times says executives will formally consider the plan at a board meeting in two weeks.
Bloggers debated the move, some saying that the company should at least try to salvage what it can from the AOL name. Others wondered if it was too little, too late.
Blog community response:
"The challenge is whether to stick with a shrinking but very profitable dial-up business, or morph into ... what exactly? And that, of course, is the problem - this has been left so late, that it's difficult to see what AOL could credibly become."
"By taking a hit now AOL is taking a proactive approach as it was most likely going to eventually happen anyway as content is now so freely available online. So I think the move was a good proactive approach, which shows AOL 'gets it.'"
"When AOL decides to abandon dial-up, you know the show's over."