The internet wasn’t always what it looks like today. If you’re old enough, you probably remember dial-up internet, downloading music off LimeWire, and the good ol’ computer room. Websites used to be so much more fun on the old internet. There were no rules for how a website should be set up and nothing had to rank for SEO. It was all just good vibes and hamster dances.
1. Entire Websites Dedicated To Customizing Your Cursors.
Make It A Burning Flame, See If I Care.
2. “I Miss The Independence And Creativity Of The Early Web”
I miss the independence and creativity of the early web. You could surf it for interesting topics developed by people as a hobby for hours and not ever run into anything corporate. That has completely reversed now, sadly.
3. When You Got A Virus It Was Obvious
Your Computer Had A Meltdown And You Had A Feeling It Was From That Weird Porn You Downloaded. No Judgement.
4. AOL Disks Everywhere and never needing to pay for AOL.
I had so many I used them as frisbees.
5. You Had To Figure Things Out Yourself
This just gave me flashbacks. This is why I think a lot of GenX/early Millenials are pretty tech saavy. There were no GUIs for software, no pretty websites on the internet, nothing to “Google” for help. You had to be so damned persistent but it made you really understand things. Now I teach GenZ students and although they mostly have superior social media skills, they really struggle to understand how parts of a computer function together. I’ve spent hours trying to explain the difference between a local and remote drive, browsers and enabling extensions, clearing a cache, using suites of apps like Google Apps or Office, etc. Especially with so much college learning shifted to a remote format this year, it really showed some of the holes in our childrens’ education in using technology.
6. “BADGER, BADGER, BADGER MUSHROOM MUSHROOM!”
7. Having to pay for every single minute online.
Dial-up would charge you by the minute. People today don’t know how good they have it.
8. Downloads Taking Literal Hours
Better start it tonight and hope it’s done in the morning!
9. Netscape Navigator was the best browser RIP
Good things just can’t last forever.
10. The Good Old AOL Chat Rooms
Parents were 100% right to be afraid of these.
11. Personalizing AOL’s Notifications
My friend’s mom’s reaction when I replaced AOL’s “you’ve got mail” with “you’ve got porn. ”
12. Who Needs URLs Anyway?
AOL didn’t use URLs. Every “website” had a keyword, meaning that every topic literally only had one website. I remember when Nickelodeon would constantly promote themselves on TV and said “Log on to AOL keyword ‘Nick!'” meaning that that was literally the only place you could see Nickelodeon content.
13. “It Was An Assault On The Senses, But It Was Also Glorious!”: Overburdened Web Design
The early days of CSS & HTML with cursor effects, far too many different fonts, visitor counters on every website, inexplicable scrolling text, animated gifs everywhere, etc. It was an assault on the senses, but it was also glorious!
14. The Simplicity Of Recipes
I really miss the way recipes used to be shared online. No scrolling through a giant website of background story of the recipe and countless ads. It was literally just the text of the recipe, with comments under of how to tweak that recipe. We were so spoiled by the simplicity and immediacy of ingredient lists back then and we didn’t even know it.
15. Extremely Intricate Fonts
I remember my friend showing me some flaming text on his school intranet page and I thought it was the absolute f****** future
16. Not Being Able To Be On The Internet When Someone Was On The Phone
My mom was in school when we had dial up. Every time someone called the house she would get kicked off the internet and have to start over. She unplugged the phone.
17. Internet Explorer Owning The Place
Every software you download was a toolbar on internet explorer
18. Trying To Download A Song From Limewire
Only to have 10 clips of bill clinton saying he “didn’t have sexual relations with that woman” or every song is Soljah Boy.
19. Dial-Up Noises
I miss when the whole house had to learn you were about to get on The Internet.
20. Amazon Was Still A Bookstore And Not An Evil World Dominating Corporation
21. The Horrors Of The Dancing Baby
22. “Under Construction” At All Times
The always present ‘under construction’ sign as well.
The early internet was awash in black background with dayglo fonts and it was glorious. And they were all connected in little rings.
23. We Somehow Survived Without YouTube
What would we do without Youtubers!
You may also want to check out our favorite links from this week:
- Did You Know? When Squirrels Jump, They Land Like Superheroes!
- Christmas Tree Ornaments That Are Actually Funny
- Genius People Who Found a Way To Protect Their Christmas Trees From Pets
- Dad Photoshops Baby Into Dangerous Situations To Freak Out Relatives
- This Artist Adds Monsters to Thrift Shop Paintings, And It’s Hilarious