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Photo via Washington Post
Photo via Washington Post

In 1996, the internet was little more than a sparkle in Al Gore’s eye. Mark Zuckerberg was 12. Google was still two years away from being formed. And the Spice Girls were torturing radio listeners everywhere with their breakthrough hit, “Wannabe.”

They were dark times, indeed.

The late ’90s marked an aggressive shift between our beta world and the internet ages we know today. By 1999, we were all on hotmail, buying books from Amazon and trying to think of ways to keep our computers from killing us when Y2K rolled around.

This is a fun look at the top 20 websites from 1996 to 2013. It’s been quite a ride from AOL, Netscape and Seattle-based Classmates.com, to the Facebook, Wikipedia and Google world we live in today, courtesy of the Jeff Bezos’ Washington Post.

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Go to The Washington Post to see all of the years, with an awesome analysis from Philip Bump on what was occurring during each of the periods.

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