On #ThrowbackThursday, Does Your Internet Say “I Love You?”

…and do you say it back?  Because you should!

One of the most interesting times of the late 90s and early 2000s was the dot-com boom.  Lots of website startups, failures, and internet service providers coming and going.  You may find this hard to believe, but there was a time when Comcast wasn’t the end all-be all of internet service providers.  Lots of companies vied for you subscription dollars.  Some exist on some level today, but most…don’t.

This week, we’re going back to 1999, the height of this time, and look at two internet service providers who tried to get you to make the switch.  Because the late 90s belonged to AOL (much like the night – in 1986 – belonged to Michelob), and everyone wanted you to make the switch.

Meet Mindspring.  Actually, meet this guy…and his benchmate.


He has something he wants to let her know.

Find out what he has to tell her…when you click play.

Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but someone just randomly saying “I love you” while sitting on a bench with a complete stranger should seem creepy, right?


I think so!

But really, he is trying to spread the love that only having the best internet service provider could make you feel.  Reliability, good customer service – all factors that make one feel the love of their internet service provider.

The internet service provider this mans gets his love vibes from is MindSpring.  The Atlanta-based ISP was founded on February 1, 1994, and merged with EarthLink on February 4, 2000, retaining the EarthLink name.  Relaunched as a free VoIP service with the name being brought out of retirement in 2006, it was discontinued by 2008.

This ad (from September 1999) was part of their national advertising campaign.  On September 23, 1999, MindSpring and EarthLink announced a merger of equals.  This ad, coincidentally enough, aired on September 25, 1999 (according to the date written on the videocassette – it is from an airing of the Saturday Night Live 25th Anniversary Special).

While I was reading up on the history of MindSpring’s short life, I found this pretty interesting list called “The 14 Deadly Sins,” as written by Mike McQuarry, and posted by MindSpring.  Post merger, the list was removed from EarthLink’s website.


#13 seems like a standard in most workplaces.  I wonder if MindSpring was able to combat it?


I will tell you this, they did conquer the “very late 90s logo” thing very well.

And there you have it, an internet service provider that loves you.  Shouldn’t they all.  I don’t think the competition would ever admit this to you.

Nope, they admit it to your checking account instead.

Tomorrow, we continue on with Internet Service Providers that you could love..and will love you back.

It was a simpler, happier time.

Until tomorrow, have a great Throwback Thursday!

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