Well, today is the day that the music died. Yahoo is shutting down Geocities. 2009 is turning out to be a big year for Yahoo. There was the announcement that Geocities would close. Then there was the Yahoo/MSN merger, where Yahoo announced that MSN would provide the natural search results for Yahoo at some point in the near future. Then Yahoo announced they were going to discontinue the Yahoo Paid Inclusion Program (Yahoo SSP). And today is the day that Yahoo will official shut down Geocities. It honestly feels like a piece of my childhood is dying. My first website was on Geocities. Awwwww….how cute.
In January of 1999, Yahoo purchased Geocities for $3.57 billion in stock. They spent $3.57 billion for an asset, and now it’s closing 10 years later. Sheesh. Do you think they made their money back? Ugh. What a downer.
BTW, anyone have any idea how DMOZ is going to react to this news? They are going to have a tough time removing/redirecting all those Geocities listings in the DMOZ directory.
Apparently, Yahoo’s Paid Inclusion program is being discontinued as of December 31, 2009. It’s the last paid inclusion program of its kind (or at least it’s the last big one to be discontinued). Often blurring the line between paid search marketing and SEO, Yahoo’s paid inclusion program has become a significant source of organic search revenue for websites all over the world. Because of that, we thought it would be fitting to have Walter Sobchak hold a memorial.
Every time he says Donny, just think Yahoo Paid Inclusion Program or Yahoo SSP:
Donny was a good bowler, and a good man. He was one of us. He was a man who loved the outdoors… and bowling, and as a surfer he explored the beaches of Southern California, from La Jolla to Leo Carrillo and… up to… Pismo. He died, like so many young men of his generation, he died before his time. In your wisdom, Lord, you took him, as you took so many bright flowering young men at Khe Sanh, at Langdok, at Hill 364. These young men gave their lives. And so would Donny. Donny, who loved bowling. And so, Theodore Donald Karabotsos, in accordance with what we think your dying wishes might well have been, we commit your final mortal remains to the bosom of the Pacific Ocean, which you loved so well. Good night, sweet prince.
So maybe it wasn’t a great memorial, but it was certainly a memorial. We’ll miss you, Yahoo Paid Inclusion. We’ll miss you dearly.
I just got word that Yahoo’s paid inclusion program Search Submit Pro (aka Yahoo SSP) is being discontinued effective December 31, 2009. Everyone has been wondering if Yahoo and Bing would keep Paid Inclusion (Search Submit Pro) up and running after the Yahoo/MSN deal. But it looks like now the verdict is in. Paid Inclusion and Yahoo SSP will be discontinued. Bro hymn for Yahoo SSP. You were a great soldier in the new millennium, and you were the last Paid Inclusion program to fall. Damn.
The impact of this decision will obviously have massive implications in the world of search. There are a lot of websites out there that rely on Yahoo SSP as a source of traffic, revenue and brand exposure. And there are also a ton of marketers who rely on Yahoo Search Submit Pro as a search marketing tool for their clients. Furthermore, Yahoo SSP may not be a huge revenue stream for Yahoo (maybe it’s $100M per year?), but I am still very surprised by the decision to discontinue the program. After all, it’s an effective program that drives millions of dollars every year. Maybe they had to discontinue Yahoo SSP in order to get the Yahoo/MSN deal completed. I’m sure more official blogs/sources will have more official details very soon.
So long, Yahoo SSP. You were a dear friend to the interwebs, and we’ll miss you dearly.
Update 1 (10/14/2009): I wish I could give you a source or a link or something, but I can provide nothing to confirm this post. But believe me, Yahoo’s paid inclusion program is about to go bye-bye. Today I’ve seen people tweeting about it, so I’m sure the details will emerge soon enough. But for now, my lack of proof makes this seem like a rumor. Take it or leave it. I’ll post links once the official story breaks.
Update 2 (10/15/2009): It appears David Lewis got the call from Yahoo, too.
Update 3 (10/16/2009): Barry Schwartz has an official post about Yahoo Paid Inclusion being discontinued. Jump over to SearchEngineLand.com to see it.