Sometime in the first half of 2010, Yahoo users will be able to click the Yahoo Updates tab on the site to see the activities of their Facebook friends and share Flickr photos, article comments and other Yahoo content in their Facebook News Feeds. Meanwhile, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announces that Facebook has reached the 350 million user milestone and confirms that the social network is shuttering its regional networks.
Facebook and Yahoo are building a bridge that will let users access their
Facebook content from Yahoo and their Yahoo content from Facebook.
Sometime in the first half of 2010, Yahoo users will be able to click the
Yahoo Updates tab on the site to see the activities of their Facebook friends,
and share Flickr photos, article comments and other Yahoo content in their
Facebook News Feeds.
There are no monies changing hands in the deal, which will last five years,
Jim Stoneham, vice president of communities for Yahoo, told the New York Times.
The arrangement is made possible by
Facebook's Connect service, which enables users to access their rich profile
information outside Facebook's social network.
Yahoo users will note that they can already access their Facebook content
through Yahoo's home page, including previewing messages from Facebook friends
on their Yahoo home pages, and share some Yahoo content on Facebook.
The new bridge will shuttle updates users make on Yahoo to their Facebook
News Feeds, and spread Facebook updates across Yahoo's Mail, Yahoo News, Yahoo
Answers and Yahoo Sports. Users will have to supply their Facebook credentials
to Yahoo once the new integration kicks in.
"The content that consumers share with Facebook friends will then
create a loop that drives visitors back to Yahoo," Stoneham wrote in
a blog post Dec. 2.
And that's the key to the deal for Yahoo. Yahoo still has a massive user
base of 500 million people, but the company has lost a touch of relevance.
Consider that Yahoo took more than 15 years to amass that number of users.
Facebook, which will turn six in February, has seen explosive growth.
In the last 77 days Facebook has added 50 million users,
growing from 300 million on
Sept. 15 to 350 million on Dec. 1.
That's a fantastic feat by any Web measure. Yahoo's own efforts at
and therefore modernizing-
portal have been rather sad, and the company has closed several social and
technological programs that didn't pan out.
The Yahoo Open Strategy
is as much a lifeline Yahoo is extending to
successful Web destinations in the hopes that they will pull Yahoo out of the
doldrums as it is a pledge to consumers to be, well, more open.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced
the 350 million user milestone in a Dec. 2 blog post in which he also confirmed
that the social network is shuttering its regional networks, originally created
to boost the site's expansion. Now these sites are a privacy liability. Zuckerberg
"As Facebook has grown, some of these regional networks now have
millions of members and we've concluded that this is no longer the best way for
you to control your privacy. Almost 50 percent of all Facebook users are
members of regional networks, so this is an important issue for us. If we can
build a better system, then more than 100 million people will have even more
control of their information."
As the company promised in July, Facebook is adding the ability to control who sees each
individual piece of content
users create or upload.
Facebook will show users a message that will explain the changes and take
them to a page where they can update their settings in the next couple of