[ Retro Scan of the Week ] The New Prodigy

July 14th, 2014 by Benj Edwards

The New Prodigy Provocative Lady Advertisement - 1996You can't see her other hand, but it's holding a gun!

It's a Prodigy-y week around here thanks to my recent article on The Atlantic. So I poked around my scans directory for something Prodigy related, and ka-pow!

I have yet to see an ad for the pre-ISP Prodigy in any of the magazines in my sizable archive (but then again, most of my computer magazines date from before and after Prodigy's heyday, with a gap in the middle), but I did find this "New Prodigy" ad from an old issue of Internet World, which I proudly subscribed to for a few years in the mid-1990s.

Ads like this one represented a new marketing push at time when the company sought to find a new corporate parent and shifted its focus to being an ISP (its legacy NAPLPS-flavored content was soon re-branded "Prodigy Classic").

By the way, the "original" Prodigy had a wholesome, family-safe, squeaky clean image, with an army of moderators eager to censor any bulletin board postings or even emails (yes, they read, or at least filtered, everyone's emails) that contained a hint of sexuality, so I find it humorously ironic that the company ultimately resorted to a sexually-charged ad like this one.

[ From Internet World - February 1996, insert between p.32-33]

Discussion Topic of the Week: Did you meet a romantic partner online prior to the year 2000? (Including those that didn't involve physical relationships.) Tell us about it.



5 Responses to “[ Retro Scan of the Week ] The New Prodigy”

  1. Eagles409 Says:

    Back in the mid 90′s I met a couple of women in AOL chat rooms and actually ended up dating one of them…. until I found out later that she was married.

  2. Enrique Says:

    I met so many girls off AOL and Prodigy. I graduated high school in 1997 and had been on Prodigy and AOL for a long time before that. I still remember my Prodigy ID. It was NFSM95C

  3. torgo Says:

    I met my wife on match.com in 1998. I joined because I read about it in Wired in like '97 or whenever they started, and they were offering free charter memberships. I met a few girls who I was friends with but nothing beyond them. Then my wife's friend signed her up (while it was still free), and we met shortly thereafter.

    I met a number of girls prior to that on various internet BBSs, mostly running Pirates/Eagle's BBS software. I still remember when I spent most of my time on those, in late high school/early college (think early 90s), and if you wanted to send a picture of yourself to someone it was just easier to put it in the US mail rather than find a scanner and spend the hour or so it'd take to email it (and hope they had something that could view it). :D

  4. Ant Says:

    Wow, she's attractive. Where is she today? I used Prodigy, but I was a new teen(ager). :P

  5. pb&g Says:

    I met several romantic partners in 1995 off usenet using alt.sex.wanted.

    then in 1998 and 1999 I met several people using yahoo personals.

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