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Chapter 4. Jim Barksdale: Netscape: Proo... > America Online (AOL) acquires Netsca...

America Online (AOL) acquires Netscape

In November 1998, Netscape shocked the internet market by agreeing to be acquired by America Online. That the doyen of net counter-culture was succumbing to one of the medium's dominant players was seen by some observers as a sign of the growing commercialization of the internet.

It was true that Netscape's bruising battle with Microsoft had taken its toll. But Barksdale was aware that Netscape's other business - its Netcenter e-commerce portal - also needed wider and more substantial support if it were to realize its potential. So, by partnering with AOL, Netscape gained a substantial backer for its e-commerce venture, and receive a significant boost to its browser business.


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