CompuServe Classic, the legendary online service that once dominated the industry, will close June 30 after 30 years in cyberspace. CompuServe 2000, a newer iteration of the service, will remain online.
Long outdistanced by newer rivals and long neglected since its acquisition by America Online, its membership has dwindled to a relatively insignificant number of cyberdinosaurs — including myself. My CompuServe Classic account dates to 1985; six years after CompuServe’s online services for personal computer users debuted in 1979. CompuServe itself was founded in 1969.
While CompuServe Classic’s passing won’t affect too many Web surfers, it will indeed close a major chapter in the evolution of cyberspace. I’ll miss my old numerical address: 72407,3343.
Below is the text of the closing announcement.
So long, old friend.
From: CompuServe Member Services
Sent: Wednesday, April 15, 2009 4:18 PM
Subject: Important CompuServe Classic Account Notification
Dear CompuServe Classic Member,
After many years of providing online services, we regret to inform you that as of June 30, 2009 the CompuServe Classic service will no longer operate as an Internet Service Provider. We hope this does not cause you an inconvenience.
Note that this shutdown only relates to the CompuServe Classic service. The CompuServe 2000 service will continue to operate as it does today.
We’re aware that this change may raise several questions for you.
Here’s what this will mean:
DO YOU NEED AN INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDER?
* If you need dial-up Internet access, there are two options you may wish
Netscape Internet Service (as low as $9.95 per month)
+ Includes 1 month FREE trial!
+ Unlimited dial-up access
AOL ($11.99 per month)
+ Includes 1 month FREE trial!
+ Unlimited dialup access
+ 24/7 tech support
+ McAfee security software
+ Unlimited email storage
ACCESS AND BILLING INFORMATION:
* The last day you will be able to access your CompuServe Classic account will be June 30, 2009. Your dial-up access will no longer be available after this date.
* We urge you to immediately forward, back up, move or otherwise copy to a location outside the CompuServe Classic system any stored data you wish to keep. This data will be inaccessible after the CompuServe Classic service is closed on June 30.
* The CompuServe Classic Ourworld “homepage” service
(http://ourworld.compuserve.com) will also close on June 30. After that date, you will be unable to access or retrieve any images, files, or other material stored in the Ourworld service. Any content you wish to retain must be saved to a new location before June 30.
* Your final monthly charge for the CompuServe Classic service will occur on your June billing date.
* We are creating a new email system where you will be able to continue
using your existing CompuServe Classic email address. This new email
service will be available to you at no charge – but you will need to
provide your own Internet access.
* Some of the benefits of the new email system include:
+ Unlimited storage lets you keep as many messages as you want
+ Ability to receive large messages (up to 16MB per message)
+ Industry leading spam and virus protection to help eliminate
threats and hassles
+ Mail filters that allow you to store and organize mail
+ Open accessibility and compatibility with IMAP & POP3
+ Seamless integration w/ AIM for instant messaging
* The transition to the new mail system will occur in mid-May. More
information will be sent to you shortly concerning the migration
of your mailbox to the new CompuServe Classic mail system.
Member Services phone support will remain available for the
CompuServe 2000 service, and can answer any billing questions
about CompuServe Classic.
Should you have questions about the termination of this service,
please contact CompuServe Member Services at:
8 a.m. – 1 a.m. EST, Mon – Fri
10 a.m. – 10 p.m. EST Sat and Sun
10 a.m. – 10 p.m. EST, Mon – Sat
Closed Sundays and all major U.S. Holidays
We thank you for being a CompuServe Classic member over the past years.
CompuServe Member Services