Sometimes on Yahoo Answers, people asking questions of strangers plunge into the psychedelic limits of human curiosity: What will the paradise for elephants be like? Should scientists feed octopus bones?
It has helped people define their sense of self: Why do people who eat baguettes think they are better than me? Is fame in high school a good skill I can use in a job interview?
It seeks an explanation for the inexplicable: Smoke from my navel? Why is everything in my grandma’s house wet?
And it creates room for knowledge gaps and admissions that perhaps have nowhere else to go: How does a hug feel?
Yahoo, owned by Verizon Media, will shut down its question and answer service and delete its archives on May 4, deleting a corner of the Internet that will be remembered for it by many – to do from good – less – richly contributes to human knowledge since it appeared in 2005.
Less frightening, BuzzFeed News this week called it “one of the dumbest places on the internet”. Vulture said it “is full of Batman villains, aliens disguised as humans, and a weird neighbor that you’d rather climb down the emergency exit in a blizzard than get caught in one. conversation.”
There is a lot of evidence for that position. People asked: Can you milk Gushers How to make fruit juice? Can I cook raw chicken in Michael wave? When I forgot my job interview? What animal is Sonic the hedgehog? DOES THIS SUPPORT EMAIL YAHOO?
Most famously, in a question that brought up a meme, a confused soul who didn’t understand much about reproductive science or spelling asked: How was Babby conceived?
Never know how many questions are based on serious ignorance and curiosity, and how many are intentional trolls. Replies require no expertise and usually show very little.
But the site was clearly viewed by some, including children, as a comfortable space to ask questions – sometimes important questions – they never dared to ask friends, family and teachers. .
“My Brother, My Brother and Me”, Justin McElroy, co-host of comedy podcast “My Brother, My Brother and Me” said: “Yahoo Answers is a place for people to ask questions they feel too ashamed to ask people they know. in real life. Service highlights questions since 2010. “Strange, stupid, really, really amnesia: They all found a spot on Yahoo Answers.”
Drew Davenport, 34, of Camarillo, California, who has seven years sifted through questions to post on podcasts, said people told him they actually used the service to get through struggles at school or for sex education. they didn’t get elsewhere.
That doesn’t mean the answers they get are good answers.
“Do you remember the idea of the Internet that people were talking about before it was really mainstream?” he asks. “Will an idea like this become a global meeting place for the free exchange of ideas?”
He replied, “Yahoo Answers is what we fear will happen. You got the real human reaction, for better or for worse ”.
This service has lost its popularity in recent years and there is more competition than it was when it was created. Quora positions itself as a network with a higher growth rate, more likely to attract expert feedback, and Reddit has a forum that invites idle curiosity of people to roam for free.
Yahoo, in a letter to our users, said it “decided to shift our resources away from Yahoo Answers to focus on products that better serve our members and perform. Yahoo’s promise is to provide premium, trustworthy content.
The questions and answers will be paused on April 20 and will be removed from the internet on May 4. This isn’t the first time Yahoo and other tech companies have killed well-known products. a time without the benefit of storage; Twenty years of postings to Yahoo Groups were removed in 2019, the same year Flickr deleted 15 years of photos in bulk.
Mr McElroy said he is not sure what the podcast would do without a lot of discussion prompts. When the show started in 2010, they used Yahoo Q&A questions to deliver submissions from listeners, he said.
While some of the questions that hit him are performance art, and others seem lazy to refuse to seek answers, he says he sympathizes with many asking. We all have some bad questions inside of us, he said.
“I think you get in trouble when you think that no real person would ever question that, because people wonder about a lot of things,” he said. “You don’t want to put limits on the depths of humanity’s curiosity-and-ignorance.”
Although Yahoo will not archive questions, business-minded Internet users have cataloged a number of questions for posterity. Here is a small selection of the more than 1,700 questions that have been submitted to Mr. McElroy’s podcast:
Did soldiers in the American Revolution ever take off their coats / coats during battles?
How many calories are in soap?
What if one day the bulls fought back?
Is the plane moving fast or slow?
How can I cut my hair like Joseph Stalin without showing my haircut by a photo of Joseph Stalin?
I accidentally ate the No Eat package inside my shoebox. Am I going to die?
On the TV show Friends, what is Ross’s point of view?
I don’t think I’ve ever seen a lark?
My friend and I both applied for the same job. He got the job but I didn’t. Can I sue Papa Johns?
I AM VERY ACCIDENT IS SHARED TO UPPERCASE, HOW DO I BACK TO LOWERCASE SO MY PASSWORD WILL WORK?
What do Canadians download?
How do you fancy a sausage?
How deep inside an apple is the most nutritious?
Why are people from New Jersey skiing in their jeans?
Should Spaghetti be shorter?
How do your parents think you’ve found a lizard even though you bought it online?
Why doesn’t the Grand Canyon have a game?
Why can’t we grow burgers on trees?
Do you all know that we are the jokes of the Internet?
HAS ANYONE SEX in the 1990s. Does it feel different now?
I like Space and Dinosaurs?
Can i bring frozen pizza with me or with me?
Dragon lives before, during or after dinosaurs?
Ladies, I mostly bring my guitar to impress women, is this effective?
Why is there no beef roll?
My boyfriend gave me a box of 60 waffles for Christmas. He seems really excited about it but I don’t want to hurt his feelings?
How old do I have to be to get nunchuks?
I kissed a guy a year ago, his saliva still in my mouth?
Help the eel! Has he gone crazy?
DOG EDDIE ON FRASIER IS A REAL DOLL OR A COMPUTER MADE?
How do people on Jeopardy know the answer?