You’ve Obtained Mail: The Voice Behind AOL
America On-line celebrated its 35th birthday on Could 24, 2020. In case you can shut your eyes and shortly conjure up the nostalgic sound of AOL dial-up and the enduring “You’ve received mail!” message, then you definitely’re in good firm. Whether or not you had been an grownup, teen, or child throughout this time interval, you possible have fond reminiscences of AOL.
For many of us, AOL was our first expertise gaining quick access to the world extensive net. Though “straightforward” is a relative time period, given the quantity of hours wasted sitting in entrance of a cumbersome laptop monitor, ready for the working man icon to attach us to our inbox whereas dial-up screeched and screamed within the background.
Bear in mind arguing together with your mother or sibling over whose flip it was to hog the phone line by logging onto AOL? Again then, Prompt Messaging pals or checking electronic mail was a revolutionary expertise. We couldn’t even think about the liberty that WiFi would in the future carry.
Elwood Edwards is the person behind the legendary AOL voice. His spouse Karen labored for Quantum Laptop Providers, which launched the AOL software program in 1985. After overhearing firm co-founder Steve Case talk about including a voice to this system, Karen volunteered her husband’s companies. Edwards labored as a voiceover actor for TV commercials, so it made sense that he landed the job.
He initially recorded the easy phrases we’ve all come to know on a cassette tape in his lounge: Welcome. You’ve received mail. File’s finished. Goodbye.
“I don’t assume anybody had any concept what it will turn out to be,” Edwards defined on a September 2019 episode of the podcast Twenty Thousand Hertz. “Definitely, had I spotted it on the time I’d now be retired, however I’m not. Even at this time, I’ve an AOL account, an electronic mail account…Once you signal on to that, you continue to hear me say, ‘You’ve Obtained Mail.’”
Edwards was paid $200 for lending his voice to this system. Now, he’s retired and typically makes more money as an Uber driver. A couple of fortunate passengers have acknowledged his voice and posted movies of their interactions with him.
At one time, AOL was our all the things. Since then, expertise has superior at such a fast tempo that we overlook what a miracle it was to easily entry an electronic mail inbox.
It’s astounding the advances we’ve made since America On-line first debuted: WiFi, cell hotspots, social media, smartphones, apps, Bluetooth, oh my! Additionally, nobody even has landlines anymore.
Society has modified a lot since AOL was our main focus, however one factor that hasn’t modified is our want to be linked to the world round us. The web offers us entry to speak with pals in different states, watch movies filmed in different nations, and entry all the things from science classes and historical past archives to movie star gossip websites and make-up tutorials—all at a fast tempo. Lengthy gone are the times of placing in hours in entrance of the pc to simply learn just a few emails.
We’ve come to date since Elwood Edwards first uttered, “You’ve received mail.” Who is aware of what the following 35 years will carry?