Life and Style Dear Barry: Open letters have become the way high-flying individuals - and firms - get their message across

It used to be just angry celebrities (and Moses) who wrote open letters. Now, even America's top businesses are taking the president to task, says Clare Dwyer Hogg

Gay sailor wins compensation

THE United States navy and America's biggest Internet provider, America Online (AOL), have agreed compensation for a naval officer who faced dismissal, with no benefits, on grounds of homosexuality.

Faster modems - at last some standard practice

The announcement of a new standard for 56K modems should make life easier for ordinary users who want to buy a faster modem. However, there are still a few details that need to be ironed out.

Charges rise on the Internet

The world's most popular Internet service provider said yesterday that it will boost the monthly charge for unlimited use to $21.95 (pounds 13.71) from $19.95. America Online said the move was necessary to keep pace with increased online usage by its subscribers.

Internet Investor: The fool's approach to investment is not to be jeered at

After the way the stock market has been behaving recently, plenty of investors, both professional and private, may be feeling a little foolish about some of their investment decisions. However, there is one website which glories in its foolishness - The Motley Fool.

Net snared US sailor in `gay sacking' row

An allegedly gay sailor is challenging his discharge from the US Navy, claiming that the Navy and a major Internet service provider breached his right to privacy.

e-mail

AOL's fight against spammers

Byte: Surfers can't get no satisfaction

Communications between users of AOL and MSN broke down as users of MSN 2.5 found their e-mail to AOL being bounced for several days. Normal service was resumed last week, but with no one quite sure what had gone wrong. Aware that neither company has been without its e-mail problems in the past, the competitors did not indulge in the sort of high-profile slanging match that rivals in computing industries seem so disposed towards. "It is not yet clear what caused the problem," AOL spokesman Rich D'Amato said. "What's important is that the mail is flowing again. AOL and MSN together are trying to determine what the problem was and where it occurred."

Internet: Why the Web's `Spam King' has had his chips

Internet users have been up in arms for months about Sanford Wallace as his company Cyberpromo "spammed" the net with up to 20 million e-mails each day. So why is he not online anymore? And what is spamming? Charles Arthur on the battle over the Net's fut

Internet: The site that is bringing home entertainment to millions

A young American woman has a small video camera trained on her bedroom 24 hours a day. The camera, connected to a computer, relays continually updated colour photographs from her Washington flat into her Internet website, where 100 million visitors around

Internet giants join forces in $1.2bn deal

CompuServe, the pioneer of online services in the 1980s, is to be swallowed up by its glitzier nemesis of the 1990s, America Online, in a $1.2bn (pounds 758m), three-way deal also involving the long-distance telephone giant, WorldCom.

Comment: Making money on the Internet is not so easy

Even in an enterprise as hip, new and fashionable as the Internet, commercial reality has a nasty habit of coming home to roost. It is reckoned that by the turn of the Century, the Internet in all its various guises will have attracted some $200bn of investment worldwide. The revenue earning powers of the Internet, however, will be lucky to have breached the $50bn mark. What this means is that for the time being the worldwide web is more about hope and expectation than anything else, at least in commercial terms. All but the lucky few will continue to lose money on it into the indefinite future.

Wimbledon 97: Court Circular: Net gains for Gimelstob

Gary Lineker once famously cited Teletext as the only way to watch Wimbledon play football. The world has moved on and there are now such useful tools as the Internet. For the price of a local telephone call, anybody in the world can follow a game as it develops, point by point.

America Online targets smaller rival

CompuServe, the pioneer computer on-line service widely used in Europe but which has been struggling in the United States, may be about to be gobbled up by its brashly successful rival, America Online.

Network: Net privacy

If you subscribe to CompuServe, AOL or the Microsoft Network, you can stop them giving out your home address by locating the relevant customer services forum. On AOL, for instance, type in the keyword COS, which stands for "conditions of service". This will take you to an area where you can instruct AOL to remove you from mailing lists that they sell.
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Evan Davis: The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing to take over at Newsnight

The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing

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Finding the names for America’s shame: What happens to the immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert?

Finding the names for America’s shame

The immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert
Inside a church for Born Again Christians: Speaking to God in a Manchester multiplex

Inside a church for Born Again Christians

As Britain's Anglican church struggles to establish its modern identity, one branch of Christianity is booming
Rihanna, Kim Kardashian and me: How Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Parisian couturier Pierre Balmain made his name dressing the mid-century jet set. Today, Olivier Rousteing – heir to the house Pierre built – is celebrating their 21st-century equivalents. The result? Nothing short of Balmania
Cancer, cardiac arrest, HIV and homelessness - and he's only 39

Incredible survival story of David Tovey

Tovey went from cooking for the Queen to rifling through bins for his supper. His is a startling story of endurance against the odds – and of a social safety net failing at every turn
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
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Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

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Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride