By Sam Ormes, Senior Editor, Sormes@aol.com
A few months ago I published an editorial in this magazine entitled "Amiga Online?" in which I lamented the exclusion of our platform from the dominant online service, America Online, and challenged the Gateway folks to do something about that injustice. To my disappointment, there was zero reaction to that article.
In late December, Kevin Hisel graciously agreed to republish my piece in the Amiga Web Directory as a New Link. Reaction has poured in and here's a sampling:
"I am an old Q-Linker from the 8 bit days. Q-Link never supported the Amiga. There was an early Beta version of the AOL software for the Amiga, but Steve Case was really pissed-off with the old CBM management and never finished it. It would be really out of date now anyway. I have emailed Steve Case twice now suggesting that since the old CBM is gone, it made very little business sense to exclude the Amiga community from AOL. I got a couple of form letter emails in return saying that they had no plans to release any Amiga interface software in the near future, but thanks for my interest. I hope that with Gateway in the picture Case will change his mind, but I wouldn't hold my breath."
"While I think it would be a ground-breaking move for Gateway to convince America Online to develop the client software for the Amiga platform, I don't think it will ever occur anytime in the near future. While the technical support issue for an Amiga client would be almost nil (we all know how easy it is to set up and troubleshoot the Amiga) the development of the software would cost more than they could possibly recoup. I have personally requested the development of an Amiga client and the response I got back was that it would not be economically feasible."
"As for AOL being the only ISP in Australia, I was just told a rumor by an Amiga supplier in Australia that AOL down under is mulling over the idea of an Amiga port of their software. Admittedly it probably won't get all the attention, features or support of the other ports, but they say there is just too much use of the Amiga in education and video there for them not to consider supporting the platform. Of course if AOL Australia ports to Amiga, that means the other AOL areas will probably offer it as well.... at least on the cdroms they mail out."
"BTW...AOL chief Steve Case has a place to leave comments. Let's flood him with Amiga Bites!"
Oh well....it was worth a try. There was no response from Gateway, America Online, Amiga Inc. or Amiga International. I did learn that Petro Tyschtschenko, Managing Director of Amiga International, is an avid user of America Online. I wonder what platform he uses!