Confirmed: Yahoo Closing Buzz, Traffic APIs – Maybe Delicious & AltaVista

News is traveling fast about a leaked slide from a Yahoo “all hands” meeting earlier this week that listed several products — including Delicous and AltaVista — to be “sunsetted.” Yahoo confirms that Yahoo Buzz will be closed, as will the Traffic APIs. Delicious seems likely to go, too.

Here’s the statement we received from Yahoo:

Part of our organizational streamlining involves cutting our investment in underperforming or off-strategy products to put better focus on our core strengths and fund new innovation in the next year and beyond. We continuously evaluate and prioritize our portfolio of products and services, and do plan to shut down some products in the coming months such as Yahoo! Buzz, our Traffic APIs, and others. We will communicate specific plans when appropriate.

I asked again if this included Delicious and was told:

We’re not commenting on Delicious specifically at this point.

The Sunset Slide

The news appears to have been broken first by Eric Marcoullier, who tweeted out a picture from an internal slideshow that was given to Yahoo employees:

You can see a larger version of this here. Marcoullier was previously a Yahoo employee, having come over when Yahoo acquired MyBlogLog — a service he cofounded. Several Yahoo employees seemed to confirmed the image via Twitter, as AllThingsD reports, as did Yahoo Chief Product Officer Blake Irving, when he tweeted about firing the source of the picture:

Can’t wait to find out how you got the web cast. Whoever it is, gone!

Goodbye To Yahoo Buzz

As you can see, Yahoo Buzz is on the list of “sunset” products, those that will be closed. When Yahoo Buzz launched in Feb. 2008, it took over the name from a previous trends-based product and was positioned as a type of new Digg with close links to publishers.

So Long, AltaVista & AllTheWeb

Also on the list are AltaVista and AllTheWeb. Both are search engines that Yahoo inherited from Overture, which in turn bought the services in 2003. AltaVista used to be a giant of the search world but has long since been eclipsed by Google. Neither gets much traffic, though both have links from across the web. Indeed, all those links still keep AltaVista ranking well on Google for searches on both “search engine” and “search engines.”

Closing those services makes sense to me, in that they don’t offer anything that Yahoo doesn’t already offer. These days, they’re both powered by Bing — as is Yahoo. The only reason to maintain them is for the extra “shelf space” they get from across the web. If they’re closed, and redirected to Yahoo, the traffic will be maintained in the short term. In the long term, some of that legacy traffic will finally disappear.

See You, MyBlogLog

MyBlogLog enjoyed a brief rise of fame as a social widget that could be installed on your blog. Yahoo bought it in 2007, and Yahoo Acquires MyBlogLog & More On How It Works is our article on how it worked at the time. I found it soon became pretty spammy and stopped using it, myself. These days, I think it’s fair to say that Facebook Connect and the “friend” widget it allows has left MyBlogLog behind. I won’t miss it, for one.

Coincidentally, Marcoullier has a sequel to MyBlogLog that just came out in beta testing today: OneTrueFan.

What’s Next For Delicious?

As for Delicious, I’d say it’s one of the survivors of the social bookmarking world. It continues to have a strong, loyal following. I can see Yahoo making a hard decision that it’s not feasible to maintain, for some reason. But it’s a terrible mistake to have let the news leak out this way. I think it’s just going to create doubt among those loyal users about the future of their bookmarks, what do they do next and whether it’ll be closed permanently, closed to new users or — hopefully — shepherded to a new company that will maintain it.

Postscript by Matt McGee: In that last sentence, Danny is wondering what many Delicious users are also wondering: Would or could Yahoo sell Delicious? Could it give Delicious over to the community as open source code? There was a quick conversation about that on Twitter a little while ago between Hunch co-founder Chris Dixon and Joshua Schachter, the creator of Delicious (who sold it to Yahoo in 2005). Schachter told Dixon that both scenarios are probably unlikely:


Could the loyal Delicious community step in somehow? Just a couple months ago, the community came together when news spread about the demise of Xmarks — a popular web browser bookmark syncing tool — with many volunteering to begin paying for what had been a free tool. Three days later, Xmarks announced that interested buyers had come forward and Xmarks would be saved.

There’s an obvious and huge difference between Xmarks and Delicious: One was owned by a spunky, little startup. The other isn’t.

Postscript #2: See our related article, 10 Alternatives To Bookmarking.

Postscript #3: See our new post indicating may not be closing down: Not So Fast: May Survive, After All.

Related Topics: Channel: Social | Top News | Yahoo: APIs | Yahoo: Buzz | Yahoo: Delicious | Yahoo: MyBlogLog


About The Author: is a Founding Editor of Search Engine Land. He’s a widely cited authority on search engines and search marketing issues who has covered the space since 1996. Danny also serves as Chief Content Officer for Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo conference series. He has a personal blog called Daggle (and keeps his disclosures page there). He can be found on Facebook, Google + and microblogs on Twitter as @dannysullivan.

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  • chiropractic

    Dear Yahoo! Please, please, please do not dump Flickr. I really wish you’d put some focus there.

    Oh, and guess we can remove all those “powered by MyBlogLog” widgets, eh?

  • nwdeal2

    Hmm, i guess this is why my SEO Book toolbar started showing OSE links over Yahoo links last month.

    @chiropractic I hope they keep Flickr, too.

  • chiropractic

    At further glance, I see NOTHING regarding Yahoo Local, they really had an opportunity there. Reviews by consumers may actually get popular someday. ;)

  • MuskokaGirl

    Why would they shut down Delicious and MyBlogLog, they(personally) are great sites. The traffic(I thought) was always great…why shut down such good sites? I use them both on a monthly basis, along with a few of my friends. When will this happen? Hopefully they will give us more time in advance….

  • Eileen B

    Wow, Delicious. This is a big blow to librarians without budgets. Delicious is pretty much my catalog. Why did they buy it??? If they do drop it, I hope someone offers a similar alternative. I love Delicious and have amassed almost 3,000 bookmarks in 3 years for my small library.

  • Doc Sheldon

    I would have to agree that taking Delicious open-source would be a major PITA. I’d hate to see it go way, as I see benefit from using it. Maybe someone will come forward with a viable offer to take it off their hands, if they decide not to support it any longer.

    By the way, Danny, OneTrueFan has been out in Beta for some time. I’ve been using it for at least three months.

  • searchengineman

    Not to panic yet. (Did swear and curse when I read this post)

    Unfortunately I’ve invested a lot into Delicious making it my Hub for bookmarking.
    I’ve invested 4 years. I’m hoping that other Social Bookmarking Platforms step up and create tools to transition to other plaforms.

    Somebody want to create Save Delicious on Facebook?

  • Jim Huinink

    Are you saying Yahoo is a Buzzkiller? ararar

    But seriously, Yahoo, if you are ‘sunsetting’ these properties, I will gladly take any or all of these off your ridiculously incompetent hands.

  • http://mauricewalshe mauricewalshe

    Mr Irving needs to know when to bite his lip leaks happen just man up and grow a pair mate – for some one in company in trouble looking like a PITA/Crybaby is not a good way to position yourself if you need to find a new job.

  • instaright

    One of solutions for users would be to migrate to one of emerging social bookmarking services like Instapaper or ReadItLater. In case of first company use Delicous migration to Instapaper

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