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This article was published on April 6, 2021


Of course Yahoo Answers is shutting down — just look at its vile ‘trending’ section

Of course Yahoo Answers is shutting down — just look at its vile ‘trending’ section
Ivan Mehta
Story by

Ivan Mehta

Ivan covers Big Tech, India, policy, AI, security, platforms, and apps for TNW. That's one heck of a mixed bag. He likes to say "Bleh." Ivan covers Big Tech, India, policy, AI, security, platforms, and apps for TNW. That's one heck of a mixed bag. He likes to say "Bleh."

Yahoo Answers is shutting down. Meh. I had forgotten about its existence up until today, when the site announced that it’s wrapping up all operations by May 4.

On its FAQ page, Yahoo Answers said that if you want to post questions or answers, you have until 4/20 to do so. I think the admins couldn’t resist that joke. If you want to download your data, including your answers and questions, you have until June 30.

It’s not hard to guess why the site is shutting down. Over the years, it has lost relevance and people have moved to other question-answer platforms such as Quora. As The Verge and USA Today noted, Yahoo Answers has become a home for far-right conspiracies.

In a note sent to its users, Yahoo admitted that the site has “become less popular over the years as the needs of our members have changed.”

Take a look at the current trending section and question suggestions. It’s filled with hateful garbage trying to rile up people.And the answers to those questions read like they’ve been generated by a trolling bot farm.

Yahoo Answers trending sections is filled with hatred and vitriol

Looking at all this, it’s clear the site badly needed better moderation. But I guess Yahoo (or rather Verizon) didn’t bother, and decided to shut down the site instead.

Currently, Section 230, a US legislation that doesn’t hold platforms such as Twitter and Facebook liable for content posted by users, is up for debate. So Verizon might not want to be caught up in that circus.

Most people won’t miss Yahoo Answers, and I’m pretty sure current users will find their own watering holes on the internet.

Goodbye, another Yahoo product.

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