15 Internet Relics We Miss (and Some We Don’t)

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Remember the days of dial-up Internet? Or when you were greeted with “Welcome! You have mail!” whenever you signed in to your AOL account? Or how about your quirky AIM screen name you used to chat with “friends”?

If you’re over 17, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Nostalgia runs deep.

Today, we take our fast smartphones with Wi-Fi and 4G for granted. But the world wasn’t always fairies and unicorns. Before the magical lands of Facebook, Gmail, and social media, well, the Internet was a completely different place.

Take a trip down memory lane with these 15 internet relics.

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Artur Debate | Getty Images


Well, we may not miss it, but it’s safe to say that for most of us, the dialing and ringing sounds of the dial-up modem are forever etched in our memories. The 15 minutes spent disconnecting the landline, plugging in the computer and waiting for the bell to finally start was the effort we put into getting online.

I can hear it in my head now: the distinctive, terrifying sound, which became totally obsolete after cable modems and Wi-Fi.

For most people, surfing the web didn’t last long—you had to go offline when someone needed to make a phone call.

Take a look here to refresh your memory.

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America Online, Inc.

“You have mail”

Today, you log into your email and expect a full inbox. But remember the days before email became a social norm? For most of us, after logging into our AOL accounts, we had the joy of a voice greeting us with “Welcome, you have mail!”

On exit, AOL’s voice would also give us a nice “Goodbye”.

Not only was the “You have mail” notification something people associate with their first email accounts, it was also an inspiration for the hit 90s rom-com. You have an email with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. A love story emerged from an ‘over 30’ chat room with anonymous screen names, You have an email it was an early presentation of the Internet’s influence on popular culture.

Courtesy of AOL


Before its time, AOL Instant Messenger (aka AIM) was the Facebook Messenger of the 1990s. Being able to socialize with friends in a virtual environment was a whole new ballpark back then. And it didn’t stop there: custom screen names, icons, and friend lists made the show much more exciting.

We all remember our first AIM screen names (especially the 80s and 90s kids). And as embarrassing as they may be, we can’t help but feel a little nostalgic for them.

Instant messaging programs gave way to the future of instant communication with the smartphone apps WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Viber. You can even go so far as to include Twitter, which broadcasts your conversations and statuses to a larger audience.

AIM was the gateway to virtual social interaction.

Adam Berry | Bloomberg via Getty Images

Ask Jeeves

Before Google, there was our favorite man with all the answers: Jeeves. Set to answer questions in a gentleman-like manner, the “butler” was a favorite when you needed information on any subject.

Loved for his humor and charm, Jeeves was abandoned in 2006, along with the general popularity of the site as well. Although the site is still Ask.com, it will never be the same without Jeeves.

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Warner Bros | Cosmic traffic jam


Forget WordPress or GoDaddy. In the late 90s, when you needed to build a website, you turned to GeoCities. Where else could you publicize your life through an animated web page adorned with dancing cats and little twinkling stars?

When virtually no other tech company offered free web hosting, GeoCities filled the demand for custom websites. Celebrities, brands, companies, movies – everyone used Geocities. That is, until Yahoo came along and bought GeoCities in 1999, which marked the beginning of the end for web hosting.



When Facebook was open only to college students, there was Friendster, the “mother” of social networking.

“It has been credited as the birth of the modern social media movement,” he reports CBS Newsit was Friendster the social site for hooking up with old friends and stalking old lovers (until later when you found out that users were being notified that they were viewing their profiles, embarrassing yes, but hey, we’ve all been there!).

Friendster was cool, exciting, and addictive. It made meeting strangers online less intimidating and socially acceptable, before we realized how dangerous it was. But with a series of technical hiccups, Friendster eventually lost steam and fell into the throes of rival MySpace.

Yahoo Answers

Yahoo Answers


Can someone help you with this! In 2009, when you searched real answers, Yahoo Answers was a great place to go as I would usually get an answer within minutes. And if you have a rather embarrassing question, you can post anonymously.

Today, inundated with trolls and ghosts, it is very unlikely that a question will be answered on the site, or it will take a long time We recommend that you follow Google.



Before Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and even Friendster, LiveJournal was the blogging platform people used to share what was going on in their lives.

Forget writing a letter or jotting down thoughts in a journal, LiveJournal made life easier. It offered Internet users a way to communicate with friends through open letters, write about their personal lives, or connect with users of the same interests. LiveJournal was the mother of blogs.

Before you mourn the demise of LiveJournal, we have news for you: you can still blog on the platform; surprisingly, it still receives a number of monthly active users.

Related: 15 Web Pages That Show Us How The Internet Has Changed

my space

my space

Before Facebook ruled the world, there was MySpace, the social networking site that appealed to both children and (young) adults. The social channel not only allows you to connect with friends, but also brightens up your personal page, add obnoxious background music, take and share quizzes, and choose your “best 8” friends (seven if you exclude Tom).

Perhaps also launching the selfie craze (that is, when people took mirror selfies with bulky digital cameras), MySpace propelled social networking to universal popularity. Influencing popular culture with everyone’s favorite friend Tom, MySpace made the idea of ​​friend requests and other social networking quirks recognizable. Songs, music videos, and movies continue to emerge with social media influence. It foretold a promising future for social sites and the way we can communicate today.



Remember once before Spotify and Apple Music subscriptions were $9.99 a month? A time when “swapping” and downloading music from friends was okay? A time when downloading music was practically “free”, or so we thought.

Napster, the peer-to-peer file sharing service, allowed users to “swap” and download other people’s MP3 files.

Launching the digital music revolution, Napster was one of the most popular online music services, as well as one of the most controversial. With angry artists and record labels, Napster’s demise was long foretold. The company lost a copyright lawsuit in 2000, dealing a fatal blow. Why keep using Napster if you really had to to buy the music?

Bought by Rhapsody in 2011, Napster eventually fizzled out. However, earlier this year Rhapsody changed its name to Napster, marking a comeback of sorts.



Browsing the web used to have a cost. In the early days of Internet browsing, Netscape was not only the leader, but the first company to monetize the World Wide Web, that is, until Internet Explorer came along and dared to challenge it. In its short period of dominance, Netscape soon lost the “browser war” to Microsoft’s IE, which offered free services and an easy-to-navigate system.

Regardless of its defeat, Netscape marked the beginning of Internet browsing. Its slow and painful decline launched a revolution that shaped the future of Internet browsing forever.

Related: Netscape’s 18th Anniversary Is Here Here’s why you should worry.

MSN Messenger

MSN Messenger

Were you an AIM or MSN baby? This usually depended on where most of your friends had signed up.

In a battle against AIM, Microsoft’s messaging service fought for chat dominance in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Like AIM, creating a custom username and choosing an emoticon were the first steps to putting start your virtual social career. MSN even allowed its users to “fill in” a friend who wasn’t responding quickly enough.



While the Internet was still in its infancy, the AngelFire website host was born. Like GeoCities, AngelFire offered people the chance to create their own web pages, with their own URLs (with Angelfire.com at the beginning).

These horrible looking sites spread like wildfire in the 90s, even Mark Zuckerberg had one.

In short, they set a great example of how a website I should not look at.

Related: Why the Internet Needs the WayBack Machine, the Site That Archives the Web


The dance of the hamsters

Don’t you remember the hamster dance? Maybe this is because you spent your precious time on the internet looking for useful information. For those of us with time to spare, the hamster dance was a worldwide hit in the 90s.

As one of the first GIFs, the animation showed 392 hamsters dancing to “Whistle Stop” by Roger Miller. And if that’s not weird enough, the GIF went viral, taking over millions of computer screens worldwide, from emails to blogs and even newsgroups.

Early GIFs influenced advertisements, music, and merchandise such as clothing and toys.



A pioneer of its time, Lycos, the search engine that served as a website host, catapulted to popularity in the early 1990s with its massive and growing catalog of web documents. With the most accurate web searches, Lycos was one of the first databases to organize search results by relevance ranking and word matching.

Also like GeoCities and AngelFire, it contributed to the ugly homepage fad. By allowing users and businesses to create their own websites, Lycos became successful enough that it is still in operation today. So if you want to take a look at the web’s forgotten history, go to Lycos, although the experience won’t be the same. Ch-ch-ch-changes.

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