Sunnyvale, California -- It seems like Yahoo has changed direction this year under the guidance of CEO, Carol Bartz, which relies in the short-term on cutting costs, making significant changes to its YouTube-like video site, Yahoo Video.
Internet portal Yahoo, just announced the untimely demise of its video sharing service. To be precise, the homepage states "We are "changing" not closing, says Yahoo. The company is no longer allowing anyone to upload videos -- and has stated that all current videos will be deleted on March 15th, 2011. An email was sent to users of the service this morning announcing the shutdown.
The company disclosed shortly after a major layoff, the move is widely seen as a drastic cost cutting measure. As a result of this decision, all profiles, playlists, ratings, favorites, and videos will be removed.
"I think its indicative of how far Yahoo is retreating," said Wendy Shurring, a search engine analyst based in Calabasas."It seems they have decided to pick up their toys and go home."
The notice reads: On December 15, 2010 the functionality to upload a video to Yahoo! Video was removed and a download utility, available through March 14, 2011, was added to users' video profiles to allow retrieval of content. The user-generated content will be removed from Yahoo! Video on March 15, 2011. We apologize if this causes you any inconvenience
It is really hard to know what direction Yahoo is heading in as they are making changes to concede defeat in various areas. If you have been a long-time fan, kind of like a long-term 49ers fan, “once they were great!” then you need to find an alternative service.
Probably unable to compete with YouTube and even Facebook for traffic to its video site, it seems that Yahoo is diverting its concentration away from user-generated content. But it is unclear what Yahoo Video will become. Of course, Yahoo is hoping that its photo-sharing site Flickr will become a popular destination for videos.
Certainly, this has not been a stellar week for Yahoo, which just announced a round of layoffs at the company. What will be the next item which is treated as a commodity and outsourced is not known as the direction Yahoo is heading is not that clear. It makes you wonder what will be the next area to be outsourced. Since there is not a clearly defined direction, it casts doubt on what Yahoo will look like years from now. The CEO has stated that Facebook is their biggest competitor, so it may be they are trying to move to Social Networking.
In an email dispatched to their video service users, Yahoo did not specify the reason behind their decision.
"Increasing market pressure from YouTube and Facebook may have driven the decision," said Shurring.
The full email from Yahoo is here:
Dear Yahoo! Video user,
After careful consideration, we will be removing all general user-generated content upload capability and user-uploaded video from Yahoo! Video. As a result, your videos, user profiles, ratings, favorites, and playlists will no longer be available after March 14, 2011. User video content from Yahoo! Video that remains embedded on third party sites will no longer be playable after March 14, 2011.
Available on your profile page is a software utility that will allow you to download the videos you have uploaded to Yahoo! Video to your computer through March 14, 2011. You can find your profile by clicking on the \’My Video\’ tab or going to http://video.yahoo.com/mypage.
Once you download your videos, you may choose to upload them to another site such as Flickr, which now allows video uploads. You can find out more here: http://www.flickr.com/explore/video.
Thanks for your understanding and thanks for being a part of Yahoo! Video.
If you have any questions about this change, please visit our FAQ section, or contact Customer Care.
The Yahoo! Video Team