What do you do when you are torn by a silly question about a medical existence or problem? Obviously the answer is to totally ask strangers on the internet what they think … For more than fifteen years, there has been an ideal place for this, Yahoo Questions / Answers (“Yahoo Answers” in its original English version), a site that allows, as it suggests. Named, for Internet users to ask questions or answer other people’s questions.
But Yahoo announced Tuesday, April 6 that the platform was in its final days. On May 4, 2021, Yahoo Answers will be closed for good. “As of April 20, you will no longer be able to post new questions and answers, but you will still be able to see content that has already been published. The site will be closed on May 4.”And The company announced in a press release. Internet users are encouraged to download their archives in order not to lose their history on the site.
Finally, on June 30th, all data on the site will be permanently deleted. According to Yahoo, the number of its users has been in sharp decline and the maintenance of the platform is no longer warranted.
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Yahoo Questions / Answers was based on a very simple concept. Internet users can ask any question about different categories of topics (politics, cooking, cinema) and vote on other people’s questions, in order to give them more visibility. Anyone can then submit an answer to the questions posed and, again, vote to either bring or hide others’ answers.
Very quickly, the platform became very popular, especially because netizens like to poke fun at some “ridiculous” questions, like Is pepperoni pizza vegetarian?And “I have burnt pancakes in the shape of Jesus, am I going to Hell?” or How do I disable capitalization on my keyboard? “. Thanks to its popularity, “Yahoo Q&A” has also attracted scammers and pranksters of all stripes, leading to a proliferation of silly questions and answers designed to make people laugh.
But the site also faces moderation issues. In 2018, online media the edge I found out that the search tool “Yahoo Questions / Answers” Results containing racial terminology are regularly reported. Three years later, some searches still make it possible to find posts from the far-right or using ethnic insults.