Yahoo is killing off event planning service Upcoming, a startup it acquired back in 2007.
But Andy Baio, the founder of Upcoming, is not pleased by Yahoo’s “typical fuck-off-and-die style” when it comes to shuttering products, Baio recently wrote on his blog. He’s mostly peeved that Yahoo isn’t providing a way for its users to back up their past events.
Baio says he knew this day would come, but just wasn’t sure when it would happen. When Baio and his co-founders left the site at the end of 2007, it quickly started to fall apart, Baio says.
Baio says Yahoo stripped out many the social features that made Upcoming unique and ignored the spam spreading across the site. By 2009, everyday people were no longer the site’s main users. Instead, mostly event promoters and spammers were on the site.
“Especially depressing considering self-promotion was banned entirely for its first two years,” Baio writes.
The goal of Upcoming was to help people find events they care about. Baio says that nothing else has emerged to the solve the problem. Though, there is a new service out there called Sosh that seems to do the trick.
When Baio first began talking with Yahoo, it seemed like a perfect fit. Baio says Yahoo promised him the tools to grow the Upcoming community, while getting the chance to work at a promising tech giant.
But in hindsight, Baio says selling his company to Yahoo was a horrible mistake.
“Selling your company always means sacrificing control and risking its fate, and as we now know, online communities almost always fail after acquisition,” Baio writes. “(YouTube is the rare exception, albeit one with billion-dollar momentum.) But Yahoo was a particularly horrible steward for the community.”
All Baio wants now is a permanent archive of Upcoming events, a task that a team of “rogue archivists and programmers” is currently working on.
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