RE:Carol Bartz tonight on new Yahoo Mail...
- Sorry, I didn't sign the post - I'm David Halfpenny (1/2d) from England, just joined.
I've not posted to the new Yahoo Groups Remodel format before, and I didn't realise my name wouldn't show.
[I'm really struggling with this text input box too - incredibly small type, incredibly slow input, and Jumping Cursor syndrome as well. Can't be doing with it, next time i'll skip all the ads and hassle and post by Yahoo Mail instead ;-) ]
Actually I'm pondering whether the Groups Remodel might make things even more sticky for Yahoo Mail. To start with, by incorporating Chat it's going to cut email use still further. But more seriously, it's likely to cut big swathes out of the existing Yahoo email usage.
You see, when I started using PCs I was working in an IT company and we were all very serious about our Image with our Customers. Using a 'silly' email address like Yahoo! was Out of the Question - guess we didn't connect it with Mr Yang back then.
So how come I've now got half a dozen Yahoo email accounts?
Well, it's down to Yahoo Groups, which have become my main way of working - the combination of email conversation and information archive making it a powerful tool for collaborative work, hobby and professional. 115 000 000 users in 10 000 000 Groups, allegedly. And Yahoo Mail is the perfect partner as there are no blacklisting issues about spam.
Well for now at any rate, because the Remodel has been going very badly. Blind people can't use they screen readers, vulnerable people have been 'outed' by privacy failures, and the archives have gone potty - they're still there but the Facebook Lookalike interface juggles the order, removes the message numbers and makes them almost unusable.
In a nutshell, Yahoo Groups went from the best product around to being not even a contender - all within a couple of horrible days.
So many of us - millions/ tens of millions? are all looking for lifeboats to jump into. And IF we jump, you can bet the farm we'll have to ditch Yahoo mail as well, and just as it was getting fun. Carol's telling phrase 'Engagement with the product' means if you accidentally trash part of it, you've likely accidentally trashed all of it.
Life's a bitch.
But it gets worse.
Yahoo Groups owners are a vast unpaid workforce literally the size of the Chinese Army toiling to build the biggest mountain of Content in history, and it draws new people to Yahoo services by the million.
If they go, then Carol's worst fears may come true - and it would be ironic if Yahoo had inflicted the blow.
Fortunately the Groups team have bought us all time by backing-off for a week - this is now the only group I know still on the New Look,bigge for the time being. Gives them time to fix the biggest bugs, and us all time to back-up our key data ready to migrate to - well, you tell me - Yahoo was the best, but we'll have to make do with second best rather than get dragged down into 'YahooBook'.
The Remodel has shown that changing the Groups code - even just a simple interface change - is not an easy option, yet Social Network software is going to need frequent fashion-leading enhancement.
My hunch is that it's going to be best overall for Yahoo and the 115 million current Groups users if they carry on withe a 'look and feel' Remodel that puts the Archive back in business, and puts the Facebook type Social Networking product elsewhere in Yahoo.
Groups is an unsung Star product, and it sure deserves a decent makeover.
So let's hope the Product Engineers can sort the main bugs and resuscitate the Archive in the next few days - I've a lot of investment in Groups - about a million messages - and I'd much rather stay.
Is anyone else here affected?