After over a decade, Yahoo closes down GeoCities

A piece of the Internet’s history went dark today. As the Los Angeles Times reports, Yahoo has closed down GeoCities, the legendary hosting service that fostered the rise of poorly designed personal web pages, bad animated GIFs, and embedded MIDI music.

Yahoo stopped accepting new registrations for the service "earlier this year," LA Times says, and a visit to GeoCities.com now tells you, "GeoCities is closing on October 26, 2009." The notice page invites users to subscribe to Yahoo’s regular hosting service, which costs $4.99 a month for the first 12 months (and $9.95 thereafter).

Yahoo paid a hefty $3 billion for GeoCities in early 1999—$3.8 billion in today’s dollars—but the service "stagnated from Day One," according to GeoCities co-founder John Rezner. Nevertheless, pages hosted on the service encompassed a decent chunk of the Internet, and as LA Times points out, it’s odd that Yahoo decided not to "keep it around for historical reference and, say, slap ads all over it."

The LA Times article also includes a retrospective on GeoCities’s history, how Rezner sought to implement Facebook-like user profiles and a Twitter-like open programming interface after co-founder David Bohnett departed, and how the folks at Archiveteam and Archive.org tried to salvage remnants of the GeoCities community before Yahoo flipped the switch.

Comments closed
    • xzelence
    • 13 years ago

    Yahoo was your name.

    • xzelence
    • 13 years ago

    OMG I FORGOT ABOUT ANGELFIRE! They better no do the same, or there won’t be anything left!

    • xzelence
    • 13 years ago

    Makes me cry. I made a few sites on geocities when I was only 10 years old, mostly related to Gundam Wing and DDR. I couldn’t remember their addresses or logins recently, but now it doesn’t matter anymore. :\

    • UberGerbil
    • 13 years ago

    Yeah, that’s pretty much admitting you arrived after the whole “internet thing” had boomed and busted.

    • stdRaichu
    • 13 years ago

    For all of the terrible sites in there, geocities was full of hard-to-find gems with (gasp) useful information… heck, think I still have some sites floating around in there.

    In true internet form, I raise a glass to the hidden delights of geocities, and promptly vomit all over the sites where it won’t make a bit of difference to the colour scheme.

    • VaultDweller
    • 13 years ago

    You’ve /[

    • OneArmedScissor
    • 13 years ago

    To compete with Google, they’re going to do the opposite.

    Yahoo is DELETING THE INTERNETS!

    Much as buffalo were killed off to chase away native Americans, Yahoo is starving Google of its source of food.

    • travbrad
    • 13 years ago

    🙂 I almost forgot about all the horizontal lines, and FRAMES. If your site used frames it was the bees knees. Gotta love those incredibly ugly backgrounds too.

    • Palek
    • 13 years ago

    Featuring an animated GIF of construction worker digging with a pickaxe.

    • bios_hazard
    • 13 years ago

    Lol I still have my old angelfire site.

    • bios_hazard
    • 13 years ago

    Can’t tell if you’re serious… If you have ever used google for anything obscure, you have been redirected to a crappy geocities site. Good times.

    • UberGerbil
    • 13 years ago

    Yes, the SBA signature comic: §[<http://xkcd.com/649/<]§

    • Meadows
    • 13 years ago

    I never even knew something called GeoCities (or anything of this kind) even existed.

    To me, this is like those scientists who become known after they’ve already died.

    • FireGryphon
    • 13 years ago

    xkcd is awesome, and the homepage today is nothing but awesome^2.

    • jstern
    • 13 years ago

    I’m glad it brought archive.org to my attention, it’s brings back memories of my favorite sites and how I used to view them. I’m currently checking out thetechreport. §[<http://web.archive.org/web/20040614232603/http://www.techreport.com/<]§

    • kenclopz
    • 13 years ago

    First Yahooligans, now geocities. It’s like they’re taking all the fun out of the internet. Geocities, is cheesy may be, was a part of the identity that composed the personality of the internet.

    In Retrospect: I caught my first Hello Kitty virus from a Geocities page.

    • adisor19
    • 13 years ago

    EXCITE !!!!!!!!

    • yehuda
    • 13 years ago

    I can’t believe they’ll be deleting the files. I mean, permanently and irrecoverably. In a way that would be like setting a museum on fire. It’s a good thing we have the web archive.

    • yehuda
    • 13 years ago

    Yeah I’m surprised they were still around.

    • Majiir Paktu
    • 13 years ago

    The source code is great, too; all sorts of goodies in there. QBASIC, random tags and attributes, etc.

    • thermistor
    • 13 years ago

    Do you Yahoo?

    • Krogoth
    • 13 years ago

    HMS Yahoo is sinking!

    • UberGerbil
    • 13 years ago

    And Flickr is still rather popular. Not to mention finance.yahoo.com is significantly more popular than any of its direct competitors, and Yahoo itself has more marketshare in other parts of the world.

    • crazybus
    • 13 years ago

    Hey! I still use yahoo mail.

    • albundy
    • 13 years ago

    should have left the nail in the coffin and stopped at down:

    “After over a decade, Yahoo closes down”

    • ssidbroadcast
    • 13 years ago

    In other news, Geocities was still open.

    • swaaye
    • 13 years ago

    Quick. Last change to recollect.
    §[<http://www.geocities.com/k_lupinsky/index.htm<]§

    • swaaye
    • 13 years ago

    marble background (et al)

    • FuturePastNow
    • 13 years ago

    There’s still Angelfire.

    • =assassin=
    • 13 years ago

    Damn, thanks Yahoo, you’ve just killed my website :/

    • magicstasis
    • 13 years ago

    Haha xkcd is great! My eyes still hurt from that color scheme though…

    • grantmeaname
    • 13 years ago

    I loved that!

    • SNM
    • 13 years ago

    Ah, Geocities. It now has a special place in my heart via proxy:
    §[<http://blog.dreamhost.com/2009/04/24/theyre-internet-history/<]§

    • FubbHead
    • 13 years ago

    Under construction.

    • derFunkenstein
    • 13 years ago

    This explains the xkcd homepage today. It’s all kinds of intentionally broken. LOL

    • crazybus
    • 13 years ago

    I just minutes ago deleted my Angelfire website I made ten years ago or so. Probably better off not having that pile of deuce floating around the net.

    • UberGerbil
    • 13 years ago

    Does Tripod still exist? I’m afraid to go look — I don’t need all those pop-ups.

    • PRIME1
    • 13 years ago

    Yeah I think Yahoo dropped the ball on this one.

    They were ahead of MyTwitFace by years and good have easily surpassed them, simply based on being there first.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share this post with your friends!