[ccc] AOL stuff
profile FAQ
Can you help me understand the AOL profile instructions?

Hypertext Markup (HTML) is not a simple concept. If you can't understand my instructions (which I write to the best of my ability), get a friend, sibling, or parent to help you.

Try copying and pasting the examples into your profile to help you understand what the tags do. By doing that, you will also find out whether or not you can use HTML in your profile.

How do I add sound/music to my profile?

You can't.

How do I put an image in my profile?

You can't.

I saw a profile that had pictures in it. How do they do that?

If the picture is made up of punctuation marks ( . / _ - * | ), it's a text picture. Some people call them macros or ASCII art. This is done using regular text, and can be copied or saved to a text file.

If the picture actually looks like an image, it's a picture font. Common picture fonts are Symbol, Wingdings, and Webdings. The tables for these fonts are located here.

How do I put a background image in my profile?

You can't.

What happened to font styles?

Italic, underline, and strikeout text aren't supported anymore in profiles. The code for bold text is <h7>text</h7>.

How do I keep a field from appearing in my profile?

Don't type anything in that field. Check to make sure you haven't left any undeleted spaces in there, too. The field must be COMPLETELY empty. If you want to use a field for background color tags, you'll need to use the hide default field names trick to keep the field name from appearing.

Can I use ANSI characters like '���������' in my profile?

Yes, but not all of them. I have compiled a table of allowed and disallowed ANSI characters here. If you try to use a disallowed character, the entire field will be erased and you will get a message saying "Profiles cannot be updated at this time".

Why is there a space in the URL I put in my profile?

You cannot type a string of characters more than 27 characters long (like webpage addresses). AOL automatically inserts a space after the 27th consecutive character. Click here to learn how to fix that.

Why are there blank lines in my profile? (AOL 3.0)

You inserted a carriage return (Enter, <br>, Ctrl+Bksp, Alt+0895) at the end of a line.

Why does the carriage return box turn into two boxes? (AOL 3.0)

Because in ASCII, a carriage return consists of two characters. When you submit your updated profile, the character you put in your profile is turned into an ASCII carriage return.

Can I increase the capacity of my profile?

No. Each field can only hold a certain amount of characters. Spaces, tabs, and carriage returns all count towards the total characters. Here are the maximum capacities for each field:

Your Name:128
City, State, Country:  255
Marital Status:32
Computers Used:128
Personal Quote:255

Why don't the Profile Manipulation tricks work for me?

They don't work for everybody. If you try everything, including copying and pasting examples into your profile, and it still doesn't work, then you're just one of the many unlucky AOL members who can't extend the features of their profiles.

If nothing works for you, don't write to me. Write to AOL. Go to keyword SUGGESTIONS, click on Member Services, and tell them you want Rich Text profiles just like the ones AOL Instant Messenger users have. The petition I hosted long ago didn't work, so now it's up to you to convince AOL to change the profile system.