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Seeking Answers from Yahoo Answers

Yahoo Answers has some explaining to do.

Over the past several months, I’ve asked 13 questions on the site, as at first I was impressed by the community response. My most recent question asked for help in getting a Slingbox to work, since it won’t work with the Ambit wireless modem I have with Time Warner Cable (as an aside, please let me know if you’ve had similar issues and know if it’s hopeless or if there’s a fix; I’m about ready to send back the Slingbox). This question on the Slingbox, and four others, have recently been removed by Yahoo Answers, apparently for violating its community guidelines.

The other questions included such "offensive" material such as:
* Wondering what others thought of a certain TV show (and a PG show on basic cable, for what it’s worth)
* How people value inbound links for SEO, in doing research for a recent column
* Seeking the best vacation guide anyone has seen in Yahoo Travel
* Asking for any insight into a business service, as someone asked me what I thought of it and I hadn’t heard of it

Eight other questions remain on the site, for now. Though it’s possible they’ll be gone too, including one seeking help in changing a setting on my Motorola KRAZR phone. Why that’s up and my Slingbox question is down makes no sense to me whatsoever. But what do I know?

I tried emailing Yahoo through a link in its help materials, but the page was down. I also posted a message in their forums. I’m not expecting an adequate response, but I’d love to hear from others in the blogging community if they’ve faced similar problems. There are dozens of other Q&A services out there, and if Yahoo gets trigger happy with filtering, then it won’t dominate this category indefinitely.

I’ve also included my interpretation of their wallpaper below (click to enlarge).


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Comments to: Seeking Answers from Yahoo Answers
  • Upon review of your account I am not showing any violations of the Community Guidelines or the Terms of Service. It appears that you had several questions removed for either no answer or no best answer being selected. If you have further questions feel free to contact me at y_answrs_katie@yahoo.com
    Katie T.

  • Avatar
    April 2, 2007

    This is no surprise. I hope for the sake of the Aquarium Hobby (of which I have been a part of in a professional way for over 28 years now), I hope this terrible idea goes away as the quality of the “best answers” and “top contributors” is appalling (at least for those of us who believe in real science).

  • Avatar
    April 3, 2007

    This is interesting David. I guess you have to find other sources for your removed questions then. Kudos to Katie for reaching out and getting us an answer.
    With Google Answers taken out, Yahoo Answers is the only player in the Answers field. I think it is one of the most successful international products of Yahoo in recent years.

  • Avatar
    April 4, 2007
  • Avatar
    April 11, 2007

    There is another option out there. We have just launched a video based Q and A site, http://www.jabbits.com. Here you can ask your question(as long as you are not using profanity, have your clothes on, are respecting other members, etc…) and your question will be answered by other members. Jabbits, like Yahoo Answers,is a free service. The major difference is that you are not going to get faceless feedback (i.e. users giving nonsense answers while hiding behind an Avatar for points that get them absolutely nothing besides more points). Jabbits revolves around video. you can record with your web camera or upload video captured with any video device. Give this a shot. It may be a interesting alternative for you.


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