Via BoingBoing, Compuserve Shuts Down. This makes me sad. CompuServe was my first online service-- I got a modem as a high school graduation present, and created account 75555,767 in June of 1983. It was a shiny new world to me, a world full of information and opportunity, and nearly unlimited nooks and crannies to be explored.
I found their CB simulator (similar to IRC), and started hanging out there. Because I was naively using the handle *Patti*, every horndog and his brother would send me private messages. I quickly learned about cybersex, and nearly as quickly learned that I didn't enjoy it very much. After a while, I got wise and when I wasn't in the mood to put up with incessant private chat requests I used the handle *Fred*.
One day I got a private message that said, "Hey there. I see that we're neighbors." I ignored it until I realized I was in my Fred persona, and then I tossed back a greeting. We started chatting, and I learned that he lived across the river from me in Illinois. We started chatting regularly, and eventually decided to get together for dinner.
And that's how I met my ex-husband. We weren't the first online marriage, but we weren't too far off from it.
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