Yahoo is in the process of opening talks with Time Warner on merger and other partnership opportunities with AOL according to the Financial Times and numerous media outlets, some of which are discussing Yahoo selling off what are considered to be its non-core assets.
TechCrunch posted last week that one of those assets may in fact be Yahoo Answers, which opened its doors in 2005 and has become Yahoo’s flagship social property, a wealth of useful yet not always accurate content, and also an authority channel which enjoys good rankings in Google search results.
Although Yahoo Answers has delivered social media to the masses, much like the aspirations of Yahoo Buzz, Arrington writes that the site is not as well monetized as it may seem; “Yahoo Answers doesn’t bring in the premium advertising rates that other properties command, so it isn’t crazy that they’d try to sell it if the price was right.”
Hmmm .. even without Google AdWords being served?
And if Yahoo were to sell its Yahoo Answers community, which is based upon Yahoo ID’s and the Yahoo Network, would the buyer; whether it be Answers.com or Amazon for example, be able to handle the load and the switch to a new login?
Being that Yahoo does support Open ID, and everyone and their family dog seems to have a Yahoo account, the logistics might not be as tough : Amazon Answers or Answers.com, with the option to login via ones existing, yet post-acquisition third party, Yahoo ID.
I mean, isn’t the beauty of Open ID the availability to open up logins so a property like Yahoo Answers could be openly moved? Perhaps something Yahoo was thinking of when Yahoo supported Open ID for its 250 million users. Makes sense to me.
I would be saddened to see Yahoo move Yahoo Answers, as I know how important that project is to User Generated Content and the pre-Yang meltdown group at Yahoo.
What about you? Do you think Yahoo should sell Yahoo Answers? And if so, to what company?