CompuServe Split Between WorldCom and AOL -- H&R Block has agreed to sell its 80 percent share in CompuServe to telecommunications giant WorldCom in a stock swap worth roughly $1.2 billion. In a separate deal, WorldCom will trade CompuServe's consumer customers and $175 million to America Online for AOL's ANS Communications network services division. That dollar amount is about five times the $35 million AOL paid for ANS a few years ago, as we noted back in TidBITS-254. In essence, AOL takes over CompuServe's 2.6 million customers (AOL reportedly plans to keep the CompuServe name alive), and WorldCom adds both CompuServe's and ANS's networks to its existing UUNET network, creating a massive network of more than 500,000 dialup ports. AOL also signed a five-year deal making WorldCom AOL's largest network service provider in exchange for discounts worth several hundred million dollars. An acquisition of CompuServe was inevitable and these deals appear to give each company what it wants. The effect on CompuServe customers remains to be seen. [ACE]
Close Word Comments Easily
If you don't like how precisely you must mouse in Microsoft Word 2008 to delete comment balloons, note that you can Control-click (right-click) a balloon to pop up a contextual menu. From the menu choose Delete Comment, and you're done.
Also, to get rid of all comments at once, choose Tools > Customize Keyboard and set up a keyboard shortcut to go with the DeleteAllComments command, available in the Tools category. Oddly, there's no Delete Comment keyboard customization option that I can find.
- America Online buys ANS (28 Nov 94)