What year did you get online?

Not real sure how to set up a poll, so I’m just asking in a non-scientific way. What year did you get online?

For my purposes, maybe something like Prodigy or WELL might count or they might not. I, for instance, was on Prodigy in 1994, but unable to send and receive e-mail to non-Prodigy accounts until the following year with AOL, which I stuck with for about five years. 1995 was a watershed year for the internet, as that was the year the (I think) 5 millionth person logged on. But even that crappy Prodigy account was a pretty big leap forward for me, so '94 is the year I’m going with. I graduated from college in 1983, a good decade before e-mail accounts were routinely assigned to all students upon enrollment.

What about you? What year did you get online?

I was given an e-mail account in late 1994 or early 1995.

I first started using the Web in 1995-1996.

I first got online in college sometimes so it would have been around 1992-92. It was e-mail, Usenet, Gopher and FTP access. The web didn’t really exist at the time. It came a bit later.

Either 1994 or 1995. I remember which grade I was in, but not when during the year it was. Started with AOL.

1984 or thereabouts. I was using GEnie and CompuSeve.

It was a much different internet back then.

Up until late 1997 I didn’t really understand what the internet was. I knew it existed and I knew companies were starting something called “websites”. I thought all that was on it was ads. (heh…) Then my parents got a computer and got online. My dad kept telling me that I needed to come over and check this internet thing out as he thought it might be something I’d enjoy. I went over, he got me on a search engine and I entered my first search, Stratocaster. I ordered a Dell computer within the week and have wasted an insane amount of time online since.

Same year I joined the SDMB.

If Prodigy counts then 1992. If not, I was using local BBSes by 1993 or 1994.

Typo city in that post. Should read 1991-92.

1986 CompuServe

I started out a bit differently. I bought a Sega Dreamcast in 2001. Sega was getting out of the console manufacturing business and dropped the price to $99. It came with a web browser disc. I plugged it into the phone line and signed up for an account with AT&T. They had a keyboard and mouse peripheral, so it became a handy internet machine. It could even do irc chat.

1991-92. Our school got an internet connection in the library and invited a few of the faculty to play around. FTP, Usenet, Archie and all that.

  1. Worked for a company that was on USENET.

AOL in 1994, or 1995, I forget which.

1983 or 1984: I discovered local bulletin boards.

I first encountered and participated in the PLATO online community in 1980.

Tolkien was discussed, of course.

Reagan (aka Ray-gun) was bashed and defended.

Fighter Pilot was played with people from halfway around the world.

  1. We had to call long distance from Kansas City to The World in Boston to access our e-mail and read Usenet. In 1990 we moved to Chicago and were then able to access an ISP here. Chinet, if I remember correctly.

Early to mid 90s, I guess. I was overseas a lot.

1987 bulletin board BBS’s and very briefly CompuServe (it was too expensive). I dialed into several local BBS to post and dl shareware at least a couple times a week…

1993 school offered Usenet and FTP by 94 we had Vax Workstations running Mosaic (early browser) and we could see the Internet. Nando was the main free news service then. Weatherunderground was available too for weather forecasts.

during that period Usenet was my main interest. lots of great discussion groups.