Forbes.com: Case Steps Down But Not Out Way back in the Dark Ages of the online world – the days of GeoWorks (anyone remember that?) – I signed up for America Online. This was long before AOL was a household name. When I signed up for my free introductory month, Steve Case’s signature appeared at the bottom of the welcome e-mail. For all I knew, AOL was a 10-person outfit, and Steve personally supervised each of the staff, maybe even signed the e-mail himself. At the end of my “free” month, the bill for over $100 in surcharges arrived. It turned out that there was an exorbitant per-minute surcharge because I lived in the remote location of Toronto, Canada. The warnings of this surcharge were buried somewhere in the agreement. This was long before they were upfront about these things, which did happen later. I’m not the only one I know who was dinged like that. I called customer service, who blew me off. To this day, I’ve never forgiven AOL. AOL is great for newbies and for travellers. It’s terrible in so many other ways. See you, Steve!