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Yahoo Geocities Shuts Down, Leaves Thousands Homeless

Yahoo quietly shut down Geocities, one of the oldest consumer web hosting services in the world which the search portal acquired back in January 1999, five years after it was originally launched by David Bohnett and John Rezner.

In a statement published on Geocities' homepage, Yahoo said that "Beginning on 26 October 2009, you will no longer be able to use GeoCities to maintain a free presence online - but we're excited about the other services we have designed to help you connect with friends and family and share your activities and interests".

So rather than try and salvage part of the $3.57 billion that Yahoo invested in the web hosting service a decade ago, Yahoo preferred to kill it altogether. Probably one of the dumber decisions of the year. Geocities still gets decent traffic coming visiting it.

According to Alexa, Geocities (opens in new tab) is ranked in the top 200 websites worldwide and enjoys the same level of popularity as a website like The Huffington Post or IGN. Yahoo now suggests users to migrate their accounts to Yahoo! web hosting at the cost of $60 for the first year or else, go elsewhere.

Geocities will be remembered fondly by many as the place where they created their first website and dabbled into the arcanes of HTML. According to the BBC, the site was once the third most popular website on the net, a place that is now occupied by Youtube.

Our Comments

Geocities, Lycos, Fortunecity, eGroups.. So many websites have disappeared. Geocities demise is closely linked to the rise of blogs and social networking as well. Witness how Blogger and Wordpress as well have made it so much easier to put content online.

Related Links

Yahoo GeoCities to close down (opens in new tab)

(Mobileburn)

Yahoo pulls the plug on GeoCities today (opens in new tab)

(Cnet)

GeoCities' time has expired, Yahoo closing the site today (opens in new tab)

(Fiercewireless)

GeoCities closes: fond memories of free sites and terrible web design (opens in new tab)

(AP)

End of an era for early websites (opens in new tab)

(Betanews)

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.