For more than a century, the American Telephone & Telegraph Co.
was a towering fixture in the American business landscape. At the
forefront of the global communications revolution, AT&T led the
way in the development of the telephone, wireless communication,
and the Internet. But at the end of the twentieth century, with one
man floundering at the helm, the corporate giant collapsed. It was
the end of an era.
Veteran telecom journalist Leslie Cauley pursued the story for
over a decade and witnessed the entire debacle. At "The Wall Street
Journal" and at "USA Today," she has earned a reputation for
aggressive investigation of the numerous industry shake-ups -- none
more dramatic than AT&T's headlong plunge as it misguidedly
attempted to become a broadband leader. Cauley gained access to
current and former AT&T executives, boardmembers, and other
insiders. Filled with new and controversial material and peopled by
a cast of characters worthy of a Shakespearean drama, this is the
first book to chronicle this riveting tale.
Up through the late 1990s, AT&T -- tough, innovative,
resourceful -- seemed infallible. For industry insiders and for the
general public, it loomed as an emblem of American business prowess
and, even more, of the American Dream fulfilled. "End of the Line"
is an unprecedented account of the ruin of an icon and one of the
shattering corporate events of our time.
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