In 1994, Stanford students Jerry Yang and David Filo listed a bunch of their favorite websites on a single directory page. They grew and managed that list until Yahoo was founded and the tool became a popular way to find content on the Internet.
20 years later, Yahoo is shutting down its founding feature, the directory.
Yahoo SVP Jay Rossiter writes in a progress report:
Yahoo was started nearly 20 years ago as a directory of websites that helped users explore the Internet. While we are still committed to connecting users with the information they’re passionate about, our business has evolved and at the end of 2014 (December 31), we will retire the Yahoo Directory. Advertisers will be upgraded to a new service; more details to be communicated directly.
Here’s a good history about how the Directory soared in popularity then got killed by Google.
Yahoo will also be sunsetting Qwiki, a service it acquired for about $50 million last year, as well as Yahoo Education.
Here’s what the initial Yahoo homepage looked like in 1994, with the directory.