Old Wives' Tales
Radio & TV
Toxin du jour
Claim: Yahoo! will begin charging for its previously-free POP
Example: [Collected on the Internet, 2002]
Origins: In mid-March 2002, those who had been availing themselves of Yahoo!'s free POP mail service received a shock in their inboxes, an announcement from the company that as of
Beginning April 24, Yahoo! will charge $29.99 a year for this feature. Those who sign up before that date can secure continuation of this service for $19.99 per annum. Before anyone becomes overly confused on this point, remember that we're talking strictly about POP (Post Office Protocol)
Advertising income on the Internet fell dramatically in 2001. Previously, Yahoo! could afford to offer its POP mail services free of charge because the revenue needed to support it was coming from the sale of ads displayed on its site. Since that revenue has dropped due to the tech wreck of 2000-2001, Yahoo! has chosen to begin charging users for some of the more expensive-to-support features. The monies needed to pay for them have to come from somewhere, and if the ad revenue no longer supports them, then individual users must.
Although signing an e-petition decrying this state of affairs might make someone momentarily feel a bit better, such action is highly unlikely to alter Yahoo!'s plans. All the
The incitement to sign the e-petition asserts that Yahoo! will be charging user fees for POP mail, groups, and homepages. That's only partially true. Although POP mail will be available only to those willing to pay a couple of bucks a month for it after
Yahoo! has announced that by early April it will no longer support FTP (file transfer protocol) to its unpaid GeoCities subscribers. Without FTP capability, users cannot move HTML files to or from their web sites on their own; they have to maintain their web sites through Yahoo!'s advertising-laden forms. Those determined to host their personal web pages on GeoCities will have to become paid subscribers and cough up $4.95 a month to get that vital FTP capability back. (They'll also get extra storage and
As for Yahoo!'s discussion groups, if there are plans afoot to begin charging for them, no mention of this is showing up in any of Yahoo!'s statements or in news articles detailing changes to Yahoo!'s services. We suspect this claim might have been tossed in to incite a larger number of folks to support the petition.
Last updated: 5 January 2008
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