A long time ago, Yahoo shut down its service called Yahoo 360. 360 was a light social networking site which people really liked until Yahoo announced it was going, whereupon they stopped maintaining it and it became unreliable and unusable.
A replacement eventually came along in the form of Yahoo Pulse. The idea of Pulse was that it would be Yahoo’s epic “social platform”. It was underwhelming, but it was a usable social network. Yahoo then gradually removed all the features people used (blogs, private messaging, guestbooks, photos), and left us just with connections and “updates”. 99% of the updates were “X has connected to Y”, but because they also linked up with other Yahoo services, Yahoo was adamant that they were of major importance.
Yahoo has announced that by the start of December, Pulse won’t exist (and Yahoo Updates will be discontinued) and we’ll be transferred to the new “Yahoo Profile”. While it’s good they recognise Pulse is bordering on useless, this means they destroyed the services and community that we used to love for the sake of this failed and stupid vision that passively broadcasting your “updates” was innovative, useful or the future of the web
And sadly, Profile takes the concept of “useless” to a new level.
It is literally a page where you can write a short bit about you. Many many other sites on the internet provide this. But you’ll also notice, the reason they provide this, is because you use those sites to do *something* and people might be interested in who you are when they interact with you. It might be a social network, it might be a forum, it might be a computer game.
But Profile is literally just a page where you can write about yourself. With the absence of anything else, the only person who is ever going to know of your profile’s existence is yourself. If you particularly enjoy reading your own profile then I guess it might be useful, but if you want to see anyone else’s, bad luck – there’s no way to get from your profile to anyone else’s, there’s no way to search profiles by interests, there’s no way to browse profiles, etc. There are no connections, no friends lists. Nothing.
I am simply amazed that Yahoo has spent time and money on this.
They have identified a problem: People connect to each other on our service and want to know more about each other.
They have identified a solution: We’ll make a profile service
They have then REMOVED the problem: We’ll make it so no one can connect to anyone else!
And then they have launched the solution anyway.