Yahoo Groups, one of the last vestiges of the old Yahoo web properties, will shut down on December 15, 2020, when Verizon plans to take the groups.yahoo.com website offline for good.
Verizon, which bought Yahoo in 2017, announced the decision today in emails sent to Yahoo Groups users and a message posted on the Yahoo Groups website.
Today’s announcement marks the end of the road for one of the internet’s largest message board systems of its time.
Nonetheless, despite its long-tenured history, the Yahoo Groups service, which launched 19 years ago in 2001, had fallen to the wayside across the years and slowly lost most of its once-massive userbase to newer services like Reddit, Google Groups, and Facebook Groups.
Verizon, which never had a plan to revive the service, cited “a steady decline in usage over the last several years,” began phasing it out last year.
An initial two-phase process was announced in October 2019.
At the time, Verizon announced that users would no longer be able to create new content (discussions) to the site after October 21, and the company planned to permanently remove all past user content on December 14, 2019.
Mysteriously, Verizon also killed any attempts for users to archive their past discussions.
While Verizon’s 2019 measures allowed the Yahoo Groups website to live on, the site was never the same.
Users lost the ability to post new discussions on Yahoo boards, but they still had the ability to create new groups and have mass-email conversations with all members at once.
With its two decisions, Verizon effectively transformed Yahoo Groups from a message board into a mailing list, a decision in which many saw the writing on the wall for Yahoo Groups and expected the service to be eventually shut down in 2020 or beyond.
That final announcement came today.
According to Verizon, starting today, Yahoo Groups users won’t even be able to create new groups.
Only the email functionality will be left active, but this, too, will go down after December 15, 2020, when Verizon plans to shut down all of the Yahoo Groups infrastructure and end an era for many early internet users.
In the meantime, Verizon is encouraging any Yahoo Groups leftover members who didn’t leave the site last December to organize and move to new message boards and meeting places before emails start bouncing.