March 5, 2014
Yahoo To Remove Single ID Login Feature From Its Internet Properties
Enid Burns for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online
Yahoo is making a departure from the single ID login feature that lets users sign into its properties using Facebook or Google ID, Reuters reports. Users will now have to register and use their Yahoo ID to sign into Yahoo properties.Users will start to see this change gradually across Yahoo properties such as Fantasy Sports and photo-sharing site Flickr, and then other properties.
“Yahoo is continually working on improving the user experience, which includes our sign-in process for Yahoo Sports Tourney Pick’Em. This new process, which now asks users to sign in with a Yahoo username, will allow us to offer the best personalized experience to everyone,” the company said in a statement.
This is not a huge departure from Yahoo's existing policy for some of its services, TechCrunch reports. "This service already requires users to register for/have a Yahoo ID to gain access. But Yahoo’s plans here are grand, not incremental — with a spokeswoman confirming it will eventually be removing all Google and Facebook sign-in buttons for all Yahoo properties. Albeit, it’s not putting a timeline on that social data reclamation," TechCrunch's Natasha Lomas wrote.
Web companies such as Google, Facebook and Amazon.com have created a universal sign-in to allow web developers to let users log in to web sites using their credentials. It simplifies registration and makes it easy for users to gain access to a website or service. While it removes the barrier to access by making a site available through the use of another login, it also keeps the company providing the login top of mind. In Yahoo's case, users gain access to Yahoo services but identify with Facebook or Google when they access the site.
"In eliminating the Facebook and Google sign-in features, Mayer, a former Google executive, is effectively reversing a strategy that Yahoo adopted in 2010 and 2011 under then CEO Carol Bartz," Reuters' Alexei Oreskovic wrote.
Yahoo has already implemented the change on its Tourney Pick'Em property. The change was implemented on Monday, though a spokeswoman noted that users could still access other services with Google or Facebook IDs, according to Reuters. Though the spokeswoman said that all Yahoo properties will undergo this change. Yahoo plans to remove the Facebook and Google login credentials from all of its properties over time, though no timeline has been provided.
The move is a return to a "walled garden" for Yahoo, Forbes reports. Early web services were sometimes referred to as a "walled garden" because only registered users were able to access content, and in some cases were not easily able to access content on the Internet outside of the walled garden. AOL was a longtime example of a walled garden, before it made all of its content open.
Yahoo may be trying to reinforce its brand, though some believe that it is trying to go back to a time when users were able to be influenced into such a walled garden.
"Um. I’m not so sure. It feels to me much more like Yahoo trying to assert ownership over its customers, and encourage them not to stray to other vendors. While Mayer pushes the line of a 'more personalized Yahoo' simply disallowing third party logins doesn’t really deliver upon that – it’s not a difficult thing for Yahoo to link a third party sign on to some existing Yahoo site use, thus allowing them to do just as much 'personalization' as they please," Forbes' Ben Kepes wrote.