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Businesses Communications Software

Oath is Killing Off Yahoo Messenger on July 17 (betanews.com) 50

Yahoo Messenger is to be discontinued in just over a month. Yahoo owner Oath has announced that it is killing off its famous Messenger service on July 17. From a report: After this date, chatting will no longer be available, and users have just six months to download their chat histories. At the moment, there is no direct replacement for Yahoo Messenger, but users are being advised that they can request an invite for the beta version of the invite-only group messaging app Yahoo Squirrel. In an FAQ about the announcement, Yahoo addresses why the decision to shutter the service was taken. "We know we have many loyal fans who have used Yahoo Messenger since its beginning as one of the first chat apps of its kind. As the communications landscape continues to change over, we're focusing on building and introducing new, exciting communications tools that better fit consumer needs."

Oath is Killing Off Yahoo Messenger on July 17

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  • by dunkelfalke ( 91624 ) on Friday June 08, 2018 @11:24AM (#56750014)

    As long as ICQ is still running, I am fine.

    • by sremick ( 91371 )

      In all seriousness, I still use ICQ. Although I've been frustrated in finding a working Android client. I used to use IM+ (paid, no ads version) but the dev appears to have abandoned it and is only maintaining the free, ad-filled one.

      • by alexo ( 9335 )

        ICQ requires registering my phone number with them, which is a no-go for me.
        And yes, I did try several of the published SMS receiving workarounds, none of which worked.

      • Well, to be completely honest the last time I've used ICQ is almost two years ago, but I still remember my UIN better than my phone number.
        A while back I had a better Android client than IM+, though. Jasmin or Jasmine or something like that.

        • by jwhyche ( 6192 )

          I switched to trillian a long time ago after I started seeing ads in ICQ. I also still remember my icq number better than my telephone number. The android client handles icq quite well.

          They finally tried to barf up a linux client for trillian a few years back but the windows client runs better on wine than it did.

    • As long as ICQ is still running, I am fine.

      You mistyped "IRC".

    • ICQ is not still running -- at least, not the way it used to. When I log in to my account (which I had been using continuously since 1996 or 1997), I find that everything has been locked down. Trying to send messages to anyone results in the reply, "Your account has been compromised. Please proceed to the following link to unblock your account", followed by the URL of a form hosted on the ICQ website. The form offers to unlock the account upon receipt of a mobile phone number. Googling shows that this p
    • As a matter of interest are you talking to yourself or is there actually another person still using ICQ? I'm struggling to remember my number, or even the email address I had back when it was popular.

  • by ledow ( 319597 )

    Only time I ever had it was plugged into Trillian and then later Pidgin as I already had a Yahoo account, from an earlier Geocities account, and... well, why not.

    I think I literally never used it past tested that it worked.

    Didn't do anything that MSN/AOL/ICQ/etc. couldn't do.

  • After this date, chatting will no longer be available, and users have just six months to download their chat histories.

    For pete's sake, how long does it take to download a chat history?

    • For pete's sake, how long does it take to download a chat history?

      ... and if you actually care about chat histories, why weren't you using a client that saved them locally?

      • by tepples ( 727027 )

        ... and if you actually care about chat histories, why weren't you using a client that saved them locally?

        Which "client that saved them locally" synchronizes local copies of chat history across a desktop computer, a laptop computer, a smartphone, and a tablet computer?

  • I remember it when we used it at the office way back. It was not as intrusive as a phonecall and not as official as an email. And more convinient than walking to somebody to ask in person.

    Somehow then it was not abused that much. When the companby closed, I never saw anything like it used anywhere else.

    It also showed me a lot about (online) privacy where it took about 5 minutes to be able to phone somebody at their place of work. And that was before google existed.

    And having a (fake) female name with some r

  • bad idea (Score:4, Insightful)

    by phantomfive ( 622387 ) on Friday June 08, 2018 @11:46AM (#56750148) Journal
    I feel no love for Yahoo messenger, but if you are planning a replacement, discontinuing the current one is a really bad business decision. All your users will leave, when they could have been transferred easily by merely updating their clients.

    This is how Microsoft went from 14% of the smart-phone market to 1% of the smart-phone market: by bringing out an incompatible version (in their case it was especially pathetic because the underlying OS was still based on WinCE, they just chose not to expose that to developers).
    • Re:bad idea (Score:4, Insightful)

      by iggymanz ( 596061 ) on Friday June 08, 2018 @12:06PM (#56750278)

      do these users generate money? if not the thing should have been killed years ago

      • do these users generate money? if not the thing should have been killed years ago

        Well, given that "Yahoo" is part of the name, the answer is obviously no - regardless of whatever words follow that.

      • by gosand ( 234100 )

        This is the reason why everything is moving to a paid service.

      • They have more revenue generation capability than Squirrel does. Either kill them both or make them compatible, either one of those would have been a defensible decision.
    • Which users?
      I've had Yahoo Messenger since... man, I can't even remember. Its birth, I guess. At my peak usage of it, I had over 500 contacts in it, of which 350-ish were online (active, idling, away, etc). They gradually left the platforrm (most of them going to Facebook and then WhatsApp too) and now I just looked them up... four people online.

    • by SeaFox ( 739806 )

      I feel no love for Yahoo messenger, but if you are planning a replacement, discontinuing the current one is a really bad business decision. All your users will leave, when they could have been transferred easily by merely updating their clients.

      You were expecting great management decisions from the people running Verizon, AOL, and Yahoo?

  • by Kwirl ( 877607 ) <kwirlkarphys@gmail.com> on Friday June 08, 2018 @11:53AM (#56750186)
    is that they are going to refactor the new messenger app to allow harvesting and reselling more meta data
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Old needs: instant messaging
    New needs: Tracking, profiling, advertising...

  • I miss the days when electronic communications protocols lasted over a century.

    STOP - Telegram era over, Western Union says [nbcnews.com] 2/2/2006 2:30:26 PM ET
    "DENVER - For more than 150 years, messages of joy, sorrow and success came in signature yellow envelopes hand-delivered by a courier. Now the Western Union telegram is officially a thing of the past. "

    • by k6mfw ( 1182893 )
      Reminds me a WU story posted here on /. just after they ended telegram service. Someone having a party to celebrate completing his or hers PhD, a friend couldn't attend but sent a telegram to congratulate [just before telegram service ended]. The new PhD was amazed to answer the door to "Western Union telegram" man in the uniform. Very unique and framed the telegram on the wall.
  • by morethanapapercert ( 749527 ) on Friday June 08, 2018 @04:42PM (#56752198) Homepage
    I predict that Yahoo Squirrel will struggle to find relevance and market share once it comes out of beta and is open to the public. The instant messaging and group communications space is already pretty crowded. Whether it be business or individual use focused, there is several well established competitors.

    One of the biggest, yet least appreciated drivers of success in the instant messaging market is having huge masses of free users. That's what provided the foundation for MSN Messenger and Skype to succeed. (The same marketing model is a large driver of Facebook's success) Knowing that many of your friends were already using X is a good reason for you to start using it too. Another driver, at least in my opinion, is the ability to connect to your network using third party applications. That lets you get more users with no cost to you beyond the bandwidth and server load charges. That's why applications like Trillian and Pidgin were so popular.

    But Yahoo Messenger shot itself in the foot when it changed the API several times before closing it altogether. Sure, it unloaded all those leeches who were using third party apps and hence weren't seeing the ads the official client carried. But at the same time it drastically cut into the relevance for the users of the official client. Why use Yahoo if many of your friends are migrating to $otherapp?

    In my opinion, Yahoo has made a similar critical error in just dumping its current user base. What I think they should be doing is maintaining that user base and offering a free and extremely painless migration to Squirrel once it is ready for prime time. Making Squirrel invite only is doubling down on a bad bet. Any invite only community is going to be small. Who is going to want to go through the hassle of asking around for an invite when most of their friends and colleagues are already using Facebook, WhatsApp, Skype, KIk, Snapchat et all? Through in any lingering feelings of abandonment and resentment from the former Yahoo Messenger user base and you have a recipe for market failure.

  • Chat rooms, mic, camera, the ability for two people to chat.
    The lack of fast broadband did not matter and users all over the world could enjoy the service.
    The service worked when the rest of the internet was just understanding how to consider software for text, cam, VOIP.
    To all the people who designed and then worked on the projects

    Thank you all for the amazing work and design that no other brand had ready.

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