One AOL Watch reader sent AOL's support staffers an intriguing test question. "I asked Steve Case if he had ever been an intern at the White House."

The test question revealed a damning truth about the mechanics of AOL's customer service staffers. The eight-word email received a four-paragraph form letter in response.

Date: Sat, 14 Feb 1998 00:55:48 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re:Steve Case

I am writing to you on behalf of America Online to answer your recent question/comments.

I'm sorry, we were not able to determine exactly what type of assistance you need based on your question. If you could clarify your question for us, or send us additional information about your request, we will be happy to help you in any way we can.

If the problem seems particularly complex, or if you desire a quick response, please call us on our toll free number at 1-800-827-3338, so we may speak with you directly. Technical Support is available from 6 am to 2 am Eastern time.

Thank you for using America Online. If you have any further questions or comments, please feel free to email us anytime.

Tina K.
Customer Care Consultant
America Online, Inc.


Steve Case,

Were you ever an intern at the whitehouse?