Okay, Verizon.

I gave you every single chance there was. I made an effort to help you understand what was happening to us, and how the platform was broken, and not working the way you said it should. I gave you the benefit of the doubt, thinking maybe you just didn’t understand it, or realize it, almost to the very last….until tonight.

Tonight it got real.

When I explained to you, that you had wrecked our moderation abilities, to the point where we couldn’t control the spam, hackers, or anything else that happened to get into our group, I had hoped that you would recognize that as a serious issue that could affect the rest of your company. I warned you first,  because that was the honorable and right thing to do.

So, what did you do about it? Did you fix it? Did you say “oh, that’s bad, let’s flip things back and figure out something better?” Did you apologize to us, whom you are RESPONSIBLE for? No.


It’s exactly like what happens in the Gladiator Arena in ancient Greece. The people are put in the arena. There isn’t any way out. The gates go up. The raging beasts come charging out. And there is no escape.

Verizon, what you have done today and tonight, is UNCONSCIONABLE! You have literally opened the back doors and thrown all of us Yahoo Groups Users to the proverbial  SPAMWOLVES!

Well, we’re about sick and tired of being abused, misused, and ignored. We had enough of that with Yahoo for SIX YEARS! We are ready to stand up for our rights, and you as a company do not have the right to deliberately put us in harms way!

Verizon is supposed to be a company who cares about the people it serves. Not serve their people up to the

You are making the same mistake Yahoo made. Thinking that because we’re the “Forgotten Users” that no one will care about what happens to us. 

WELL, I CARE! If I didn’t care, I wouldn’t have fought this fight for six years!

I watched while Yahoo tormented disabled users, elderly users, and Veterans.

I watched while Yahoo exposed private information from a Battered Women’s shelter and a Freecycle Group.

I watched while Yahoo stripped us of our carefully crafted color schemes, wrecked our photos, and destroyed our groups.

I watched while Yahoo sent people down to the User Voice “Trench” to scream into empty air for help that would never come.

I watched while Yahoo tried to delete the evidence of all that they’d done. 
And I had archived it all.

I watched all that and more for SIX WHOLE YEARS. I struggled to get someone, anyone to listen to us, to understand what was happening to us. I watched how when Yahoo Mail broke, oh, Yahoo couldn’t jump through hoops fast enough to fix it, and the media covered it EVERYWHERE!

But us? Nothing. No one came to fix our broken platform.  We didn’t have much in the way of media coverage. No one cared about our situation.  And eventually, no one thought we were even there anymore.

And now, Verizon, you  own Yahoo. You bought our broken Yahoo Groups Platform. Yep, we came with the sale. And we do not intend to just sit down here on our broken platform and be abused & ignored for another six years.


You have shown your hand. Promising us that we could keep our website with the cover photo and description, just not our archives, and then today, all those cover photos disappeared, and the description on at least my group was seriously messed with, and the image above it is gone. Be honest, you didn’t intend for us to keep it.

The most basic and simple thing, our group heading photo and description graphics. Gone. Poof. Just like the post and reply buttons that you removed from the group site as well. And now, it’s the moderation controls, and controlling who views what and when, nope, the grid is GONE.

You’ve left the backdoor open now, and the SPAMWOLVES, MALWARE MONSTERS and VIRUS VIPERS are just all going to stroll right in, with us powerless to stop them. 

So what’s the worst you can do to us? Probably delete our archives before the deadline. But you know, that wouldn’t be smart, not with all the attention on your company right now, because it would be clear it was a deliberate act.

Delete my group? Or somehow delete me? Yahoo never tried, I think they were smarter than that. Because they knew that wouldn’t make me go away, and I had archived all the evidence. Besides, my Yahoo group is basically useless. I’ve set up my Headquarters on another Non-Yahoo, safe platform.

And even if you tried to delete me out of existence on the Yahoo platform, that would never stop me from standing up for the millions of Groups Users whose lives and groups have been devastated over the last 6 years.

No, it’s time for accountability. And if I can’t get it from Yahoo, well, you own the company. Yahoo Mail Users, the minute they had problems with NEO, they got a fix. They got tons of media attention, they were treated like they were important to the company.

I think it’s our turn to be treated like we’re important too.
Or, if you can’t or won’t fix it, our first offer still stands:

  • Unban the archivers
  • Give us unblocked access to the site
  • Unhide our content where we can see it
  • Let us get our archives and photos in a safe manner
    with no malware included
  • Give us more time*

And we will gladly get our archives and leave this place.

Brenda Fowler
Nightowl >8#
Leader of the Yahoo Groups Users Crusade

*either until the end of January 2020 or until March 14, 2020

And The Shoe Finally Drops

Yup.  Running late to the very end, Yahoo has finally converted things to the mailing list.  I had noticed it about 45 mins ago (1pm PST) as I was working with the archive team to the very end.

Archivists and our group members alike are noticing that the “Photos”, “Files” and “Links” tab have finally disappeared from the web (Neo) interface. So, this probably is finally the change that was meant to take effect on December 14th.

Of course, here at Mods and Members…. The fight isn’t over, but unfortunately the conversation cant continue on Yahoo Groups, with things this far gone. “Too confusing when they have broken it again” as Owlsy said*.  If you come across this website, and you are from our Yahoo Group, know that we still have our new(er) version of the group over here on Groups IO: (although, you may get an invite email from either Owlsy and I. She is working her wings as fast as she can)


-Kat (Selina)



Well, it’s almost here, what was known as deletion day, but now will be known as hide-it-away day. Regardless of how you phrase it, the bottom line is groups will become hidden and or private at 11:59 p.m. Saturday night/12:00 a.m. Sunday morning.

But the most striking thing about today, is it’s the fifth day in a row that I haven’t gotten any response from my Verizon contact. And THAT is very unusual. He even answered me on Black Friday and in the middle of the night.

My husband John thinks that Hans Vestberg assigned him to do whatever he could to “Make That Owl Go Away!” Hehehee.

Here are our last E-mail exchanges before it stopped.


Hi Brenda:

I hope to address your concerns and add some clarity on the issues you’re referencing.

Regarding the 128 people that joined Yahoo Groups with the goal to archive them – are those people from If so, their actions violated our Terms of Service. Because of this violation, we are unable reauthorize them. Also, moderators of Groups can ban users if they violate their Groups’ terms, so previously banned members will be unable to download content from that Group. If you can send the user information, we can investigate the cause of lack of access.

The Groups Download Manager will download any content an individual posted to Yahoo Groups. However, it will not download attachments and photos uploaded to the Group by other members. For those that are having difficulty with the files delivered, this help article explains the types of files within the .zip file sent and how to find third party applications that open them. This is the only way that we can deliver data to our users.

While users will no longer be able to post or upload content to the site, the email functionality exists. If you are having issues with this feature, please reach out to and we will work to fix the problem with any delay.

I understand your usage of groups is different from the majority of our users, and we understand your frustration. However, the resources needed to maintain historical content from Yahoo Groups pages is cost-prohibitive, as they’re largely unused.

Regarding your concern around timeline, on 10/16, we posted this help page and began sending emails to Groups users explaining the changes to come, including the 12/14 deadline for download request.

On 11/12 and 11/19, we confirmed in email to you that so long as a request to download was put in by December 14th, we will ensure your download is complete before any deletion. This is the case for all Groups users and step-by-step instructions are being sent now to users to support them through the process.

We recognize this transition may be difficult, and we’d like to provide as much assistance and clarity as we can.


(name omitted)


(Name omitted)

VERIZON/YAHOO does NOT understand our frustration.




YAHOO has mistreated us and abused us all for 6 years, and it’s all coming out this weekend. VERIZON owns Yahoo now, and is the one who should clean up their mess.

If we are allowed to have our archives from Verizon/Yahoo, then we should be able to get them ourselves any way we wish. All Verizon plans to do is throw it away. The stuff you send us is messed up, broken, incomplete, and virus ridden. It is UNACCEPTABLE as a solution.

The 128 people you banned were REQUESTED by the group owners to get their stuff.
Verizon refuses to give us more time to get it. We can’t do it in 8 days.

So, we will continue to press public opinion about this issue, in every arena that we can with all that we have to make this deletion stop and give us more time, and work something out with Verizon to get our stuff, which is costly to store, and go away.

Bottom line. Give us our archives and we’ll leave and never come back.

Thank you sincerely,




Good evening (NAME OMITTED)
Please relay this to Verizon/Yahoo.

This is the unfairness that Verizon has shown to Yahoo Groups Users.

First of all, the initial letter said that Verizon had researched the use of Yahoo Groups. This is a complete falsehood. You know how I know it is? Because if you had truly researched the use of Yahoo Groups, you’d have found the 55,000 active groups that are used often, many on a daily basis, despite them being broken in many areas. But Verizon did not do that. If they had, they would have found:

  • A police cooperative in Washington DC that was using them as a network to communicate with their respective Neighborhoods with over 17,000 members.
  • A phone company in the UK that assigns phone numbers using the groups and now will lose all those phone designations when it’s deleted.
  • A Birding group in new Delhi with 2,000 members that has collected data and research on birds for TWO DECADES.
  • An Adoption group in France, that has been using it for years and years to communicate and share history and photos and more.

They also would have found:

  • Numerous support groups for people who are suicidal or depressed.
  • Numerous medical groups for people to communicate more effectively with their doctors.
  • Numerous Vet groups with 24 hr care advice for sick pets.
  • Numerous support and help groups for the Elderly.
  • Numerous Historical groups for WW2 Veterans, Vietnam Veterans, and etc.
  • Numerous science groups that have used them for years and have all their research there.
  • Numerous fan fiction groups or arts groups that have shared their work for years.

No Verizon, these groups are NOT largely unused. You just didn’t do your homework. You didn’t find us, who could have told you they were used all the time. You didn’t make an effort to understand what groups were, and how they were used. You just decided they weren’t being used, and weren’t important and decided, “Hey, let’s just delete them!”

So not researching thoroughly, and probably listening to Yahoo’s telling you they weren’t being used was your first mistake.

The second mistake, when the initial plan to delete our archives was hatched, some people learned it on October 17th. Not everyone did. That’s because it was very quiet and low key, and not everyone goes to the website all the time. Many use it when they need to search for something, or check out a photo. The point is it’s a mail list with an archive.

Some e-mails were sent to members, and perhaps maybe all were sent, but believe me, all did not arrive on that date. People began finding out by receiving letters days, weeks, and even a full month later. This is because Groups e-mail is unreliable. Period. It has been unreliable since Mayer broke it in 2013.

Even those learning it on October 17th, had a very small window of time to save their group. It was a period of 58 days, less than 2 months. That was never going to be enough time for over 55,000 groups to save their archives.

As you said, photos were not downloaded from the groups as a group. So anyone who wanted them had to manually save them by hand. And there are groups with thousands or hundreds of thousands of photos, especially art groups and photography groups. It couldn’t be done in the time we were given.

This delay in us finding out, left barely weeks for some people to act. Thus the panic all over the Internet, which Verizon would see if they would just look, was immediate and furious. They came to me, because I stopped the destruction of Yahoo Groups in 2010, and have been crusading against Yahoo for their unethical treatment of us, and fighting to protect our archives for 6 years.

So, as I had kept the Crusade blog up and the Crusade groups open, they all fled back to me. And this time, it wasn’t that we couldn’t get them and leave, and it wasn’t that they had broken access. This time Verizon planned total destruction. This time it was for keeps. So of course, I had to start the Crusade again and take it to high gear.

So the best thing Verizon could do, since they are just going to throw us all into the trash anyway, as we aren’t important to them, is let us get our archives any way we can. The terms of service really should not apply to people who have been told, we’re gonna delete you from existence. If it’s lawful for us to get them from you, in broken buggy and virus ridden state, it’s just as lawful for us to get them ourselves.

Yahoo made a huge mess of us. I tried to warn Verizon even before they purchased it. They did not listen. Now they have the mess on their hands, and we will not be silent. Even if Verizon really does delete us out of existence, we will never stop telling the world what they and Yahoo did. Because it’s high time Yahoo Groups Users start being treated as human beings again.

Bottom line. Verizon is being unfair to a group of people using a property they purchased, they are being unethical in the manner in which they announced it, and unreasonable in the time that they gave us to accomplish it.

So we demand fair and equal treatment, and will stand up for it until we get it.


Brenda Fowler


Good morning (Name omitted)

You say you want to help clarify.

Okay, we want an exact time, and a time zone to match, to determine the December 14th deadline. Does it include December 14th? If so, does it go to midnight December 15th? End of the day does not tell us anything.

An exact time, citing ET or CT time zone on the 14th is requested.





Good morning, Brenda,
The exact time is 11:59 PM PT on December 14.
Thank you,
(name omitted)


The above is the last response I got from my contact at Verizon. I suspect that the things I asked about in the letter before clarifying the time, made the execs nervous and they told him to no longer reply. Just a guess, but probably a good one.

Now with the situation of Verizon laying off 150 people this week, you have to ponder it a minute. Did my contact stop replying because I’m getting to things they have no good answer for, or did he stop replying because they laid him off?

Good question but I don’t have the real answer.

Nightowl >8#


“Twas 2 days before Deletion Day
and in Yahoo Groups.
All the frantic archivists
were jumping through hoops! “

Sounds like the beginning of a whimsical poem, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, it’s anything but. Instead it’s a sad story, one of loss & devastation, and happening at the worst time possible, right before Christmas.

Yes, it’s hard to believe anyone would be so cruel as to do something to ruin the Christmas Season for anyone. But Verizon has done it.

In Mid-October, Verizon announced that they were going to delete our Yahoo Groups Archives. This included everything, messages, photos, databases, etc. And we had until December 14th to try and save it. It wasn’t even Halloween yet, and here they were with a mean trick.

Someone Tweeted:

So OF COURSE Yahoo! is going to stop allowing use of Yahoo! Groups in exactly one week, and OF COURSE Yahoo! is going to delete/wipe ALL content in ALL Yahoo! Groups in 3 months. And OF COURSE the front page says NOTHING about it.”

The depressing and shocking news caused many users to feel very depressed and sad. So instead of the things they should have been doing, right before Thanksgiving, Yahoo Groups users were trying to find ways to preserve their groups archives, instead of looking forward to being with family and friends, and a enjoyable meal.

One user who chooses to remain anonymous, wrote this to me:

This is worse than what they did 5 years ago, and if they reverse, the damage will already be done. They are forcing people to make a decision. Who is going to wait til the last second and then watch all their work disappear? Who wants to take the chance that everything is downloaded; who has the right to to do that? I know I can’t. And this is all happening over Thanksgiving. Hell, I don’t know if I can leave it sitting there hanging over my head over Thanksgiving.

Sure enough, Verizon had announced this right in the middle of the holiday season without even thinking about how it might affect people during one of the busiest and nostalgic times of the year.

Someone tweeted:

@hansvestberg For God’s sake, Mr Vestberg, stop the destruction of Yahoo Groups’ archives and let the users get their data before you emulate Kaiser Wilhelm’s destruction of the Louvain Library in 1914. What kind of barbarian are you?

And to make matters worse, Yahooville had been broken so badly in 2013, that archiving it to save it was a huge challenge. But the Archivists were up for the task.

“Yahoos in Yahooville
liked their groups a lot,
But in their shiny tower,
Verizon did not!

We never knew why,
they never did say,

but trouble was bound for
Yahooville that day.”

“A message arrived
with a terrible plight,

no more new content
allowed on the site!

And what about all of
the content still there?
Verizon would toss it
away in thin air!”

“We had ’til December 14
to retrieve

The archives that we’d
been unwilling to leave

trapped on the Yahooville
platform of doom,

And Verizon is saying that
there’s no more room.”

A Verizon Employee wrote this to me:

I understand your usage of groups is different from the majority of our users, and we understand your frustration. However, the resources needed to maintain historical content from Yahoo Groups pages is cost-prohibitive, as they’re largely unused.

Largely unused? Nope. I use it differently than others? Nope. Did Verizon do their homework about Groups? Nope.

“Verizon assured us
of course we could stay,
They just planned to throw
all our archives away.

And stop us from posting
directly on site
or to join a new group
without an invite.”

“This wasn’t Yahooville
the Yahoo’s had known

This was destruction of
groups that we owned

reduced to just e-mail
with no way to share

The content and data
that used to be there.”

This was on Twitter:

“Today it was announced that Yahoo! Groups is shutting down, and taking with it a piece of critical national infrastructure: the Oftel Yahoo Group which is used for managing UK phone number assignments. Yes, really: See Ofcom’s website”

“Verizon told Yahoos
they’d send us our data

But they didn’t hear us
that Yahooville’s strata

was broken so badly
more often than not,
It just didn’t work quite
as well as they thought.”

Someone else tweeted:

@YahooCare I’ve tried a couple times to download my Yahoo Groups data, at: – but each attempt results in a “no data” message. That’s not right my Yahoo ID … has existed since 2003 and has been active in many Yahoo Groups during that time. Help?

“So archiving teams
from about everywhere

Said they’d rescue Yahooville,
so do not despair”

Verizon saw them and said
we can’t allow,

These actions being taken
by archivists now”

“So they banned them
And blocked them,
Stopped them in their tracks,
With very few days left
to finish their task.”

One archivist wrote:

“We had a lot of ‘external’ (non Archive Team) volunteers helping out, with the expectation that the groups they were joining would be saved, and it is important to communicate to them that Yahoo have basically destroyed most of our progress and work will now need to begin from scratch. I want to avoid a situation where someone comes along in six months time, asking for a group they expected to be saved because they joined it, and having to tell them we didn’t manage to save it.”

“Their cries were heard
by an owl who was feathered,
Whoo said to them,
“we will be stronger together”

A plan was created,
a strong Call To Action,

In hopes that Verizon
would hate the reaction.”

“The Yahoos contacted
Execs and Stockholders

Board Members and Media
and became emboldened

When the media finally
noticed their plight,

They thought that just maybe,
we might win this fight.”

“When Verizon extended
the deadline we cheered,

But soon we discovered
it wasn’t sincere,

The deadline was only
to ask that they send

our messed up files that
we’d get only from them.”

Someone Tweeted:

“We’re willing to work with Verizon and find a solution where everybody comes out with a win, we just want to save everything That’s our only requirement, if it’s more time that they need and if we go slower if they have less resources that’s fine but we want to save everything.”

“Our Archives are going
to be hidden from view

Archiving is going
to be harder to do,

No way to save photos
that are now out of sight

Or join a new group
without an invite.”

A Shareholder Tweeted:

@hansvestberg  @VZUpToSpeed Hans, @verizon is committing a great evil, by destroying the Yahoo Groups information trove. Verizon plans to DESTROY all data in more than 55,000 Yahoo Groups. Speaking as a 17-year shareholder, I beg you, PLEASE put a stop to this!

The cost of maintaining a static data archive is negligible. A 5TB backup hard disk drive costs about $110. I built my own doubly-mirrored 2TB server for about $200. Please direct someone at @verizon to give a Yahoo Groups archive to @archiveteam for safekeeping.

“Verizon! You’re making
a serious mistake!

One that we’re sure
you’ll regret if you make,

Leave it as is
until 1/31,

Don’t change a thing,
and we’ll get the job done!”

“Stop this disaster
about to take place

We’ll get our stuff
and get out of your face

We’re willing to work with you
to do it right,

Please, don’t be a GRINCH,
you can stop it tonight!”

Someone tweeted:

“The Archive Team at its current rate may not meet its weekend deadline for Yahoo Groups. They extended group owners deadline, but they will shut down the website at the end of the week! We are doing everything we can! We have 500k Groups left to archive… We are only doing about 20 a minute. We need another 19 days to save everything… Yahoo can’t extend their deadline by 19 days?!”

“But alas, time is short
and it’s slipping away

We only have Sunday,
yep, just one more day,

To force the Verizon’s
to give us more time,
And sorry, but that is
the end of my Rhyme.”

Please Verizon, If you won’t give us six more months, just leave everything like it is, and don’t change anything until January 31, 2020 and just let us collect our stuff. If you do that, you will be praised for seeing the light and helping to do the right thing.

If you don’t, well…you’ll always be known as the Verizon who stole Christmas from Yahooville.

So which will it be?

Nightowl >8#



Dear Group Moderators and Members,
Last month we notified you of the changes coming to Yahoo Groups that better align with user habits,

What this means is, in October, & then November, they told us what they “believed” better aligned with user habits.  But it does not.  FALSE.

and today we are providing an update to guide you through the next steps of the transition. Yahoo Groups is not going away

FALSE. They may believe that, but if they take the action they are trying to take against us, Yahoo Groups WILL go away. A mailing list can’t be maintained well without an archive. That’s part of what a mailing list is. And there’s a lot more, but we’ll get there. 

but we are making adjustments to ultimately serve you better. 

FALSE. Nah. They aren’t serving us better. All they are doing is serving us up to the Verizon Gods to be sacrificed. If they truly wanted to serve us better, they would start by communicating with us about what it is we need to make Yahoo Groups a wonderful place again.

We are amazed at the vibrant community you’ve created through Yahoo Groups and we want to make sure you feel supported as we introduce these changes. 

Yeah right. FALSE. Do we feel supported? Nope. We feel utterly completely betrayed. We feel like what everyone has called us, “The Forgotten Users” because no one thinks we are here. We scream and cry and try and tell people, but they’re like Horton and the who…they don’t realize how much this little speck of dust on the Verizon landscape contains, or how important it is.

Related Post: Yahoo Groups – The Forgotten Users

If they are so amazed at the vibrant community we have created, maybe they could just get us some competent programmers, fix the broken NEO platform, or better yet, flip us back to our beloved Classic and start running ads on it again. Then we truly WOULD be a thriving vibrant community that could benefit Verizon.


The following changes were made since our last communication:
  •   Users can now only join a Yahoo Group through an invite or group request approval by the Group Moderator.

What this means, is if you have a group where the moderator or owner died, and you can’t get back in it, or can’t do anything in it, now you can’t even just go join it, because it takes a moderator to get you in in the first place, and there isn’t one anymore.

This would essentially cripple many groups who are without a moderator, due to any number of reasons, and it would prevent anyone from joining a group on their own to test it out.

In addition, it would prevent ANY ARCHIVE ATTEMPTS to rescue content in that group from within. 

Yahoo was a place where you could always pop in and check out a group without ever having to know anyone in it. The new way would require someone having to find a way to get the attention of someone else in the group, and only if that person is a moderator, to invite them in. TOTAL CHAOS, and a huge barrier to the greatness of groups.

   •   New Groups can’t be public. They can only be private (not listed in Groups directory, membership by invitation only) or restricted (listed in Groups directory, membership requests must be approved by a Group Moderator).

This is even worse than the first one. The concept of having public groups was one of the things that made Yahoo so great. People could browse from the outside without joining, and make determinations about where they wanted to join in the long run.

The other serious thing is that if groups are suddenly made private, and there is no owner or moderator able to do things from within, and you can’t get in, you can’t use the database or files, or access photos, and you can NO LONGER ARCHIVE THE GROUP FROM OUTSIDE.

Meaning, you can’t copy and save your photos one by one, you can’t copy and paste the messages (and believe me, at the beginning that’s the only way we could save them), and again, if there is no owner/or moderator available, you are out of luck trying to get inside without someone to invite or approve you

   •   Members must share all content via email, and can no longer upload or host new content on the Yahoo Groups website itself.

In other words, you are basically SOL because real time communication is now going to rarely, if ever happen, and you won’t be able to share photos with the groups other than through e-mail. I’m also guessing it doesn’t allow you to customize the site or change the cover photo, provided they even really leave us the site, of which I’m skeptical.

One thing I found out when Verizon/Yahoo decided to remove our NEW TOPIC and REPLY buttons from our platform, was that if the messages were delayed, i.e. not working well that day, the answer to the question would arrive on the site or in your mail ahead of the question.

Yahoo Groups Mail & the entire Groups platform was broken in 2013 by Marissa Mayer, and it’s STILL broken. And if new content can’t be viewed on the site anymore, how are you going to know if your post really made it through the site to your destination? Answer, you won’t.

Related Post: The Crumbling Walls Beneath Neo’s Facade

The following changes will be made on December 14, 2019:
   •   Public groups will no longer exist. All existing public Groups will become restricted Groups that require Group Moderator approval to join.

Here we are again. No public groups. That’s absolutely unfair. We have maintained these groups, some here for 2 decades, and they are just going to suddenly make this change? And again, if there is no one inside to moderate or make someone an owner, more users will again be locked out of their groups.

   •   Any content that was previously uploaded via the website will be removed.

And this is the worst.  Not only the almost 2 decades of messages you’ve had in the groups, but everything else. All the photos, files, databases and attachments. GONE. Poof. No way to go back and search an empty database, no way to ever retrieve those photos. This is the most cruel thing Verizon has insisted it will do on December 14th, and we are desperately trying to stop them. 

Related Post: The Hidden Value of Archives


If you would like to keep any of the content you’ve posted or stored within your Yahoo Group, please download it by December 14 by accessing the Groups Download Manager at this link. Once you provide your preferred email address, we will send you a confirmation of your download request and notify you once the download is complete.

And this is the worst cut of all. They are asking us,
1) TRUST US to send you your archives.
2) TRUST US not to let you down and decide not to send them.
3) It’s ok if you can’t get all your photos, links, attachments, etc. 

You will receive a link to a downloadable zip file via email for each of your Groups organized into a separate folder. Download time varies depending on the amount of information and file size.

This is not anything easy to use, or understand for a non techie user. It even confounded me. On top of that, what they are saying is we’ll send you whatever we can, and that’s it. They also are saying, oh, if there are viruses in them, or they are incomplete, we’re not to blame.

And they are saying, TRUST US. And we don’t. Not after the way they’ve been treating us, and forget even thinking about trusting Yahoo, that pretty much stopped in 2013.

If your download request is made by 11:59 pm PST on Saturday, December 14, 2019, your content will not be deleted until your download is complete. 

What they are saying here is, you will be unable to see anything in your groups, but you have to trust us that if you made the download request, they aren’t gone, and that you will receive them.

They have extended the deadline to request that download until January 31, 2020 but that doesn’t help the archivers, individual members who want to save photos and other content from the site, group owners who want to manually archive their messages. Nope.

Related Post: Fighting To Preserve Our History

THE VERY MINUTE THAT THESE GROUPS GO PRIVATE all outside archiving attempts are stopped in their tracks for the most part. Then you have to “ahem” TRUST Verizon to keep their word and provide it. (cough).

We are unable to accommodate any download requests made after this deadline.

What the heck is this? A great big corporation like Verizon and it can’t bother to download archives after a certain date? What’s the deal, Verizon? Does it suddenly turn into a pumpkin on that date at that exact time?

Give me a break, Verizon. You’re just lazy and don’t care, and don’t want to be bothered by us.  Just admit it, it would be more believable than “oh we care about you.” cause you don’t. FALSE.

This is the final reminder to download your content. You can find additional information about the upcoming changes here.

In other words, “this is the final reminder, not the one we sent before this, or the one we sent after telling you the download request date was extended.” What they are really saying to us is, we don’t want you, you’re useless dead weight to us, just go away please and we’ll clean up the mess after you leave.

We have worked extensively with our customer support team to develop recommendations for tools that can help you with any download issues. See help article here.

This isn’t any help to most people. What we need is for them to work WITH US to rescue our data, not every group we own all jumbled up in zip files and not in any condition to transfer somewhere else and continue to use on a regular basis.

Verizon needs to ALLOW archivers in. It needs to ALLOW archiving tools to be used by regular users. It needs to STOP blocking all efforts we make to retrieve our data, because by doing that, they are following in Yahoo’s footsteps. And look where Yahoo is now.

We have watched the evolution of Yahoo Groups with awe, as we grew to a community of millions with over 10 million Groups. Every day, we witness the power of community and shared passions, and our mission is to provide a platform for the strong connections people make with each other around their interests.

Bull Puckey.  If you cared at all, like you imply,  you would listen to the tens of thousands of Yahoo Groups users raising their voices in outcry of this imminent loss of our lives and “homes”.

No More.  Its Time to Take Action

You would pay attention to us, as we fling ourselves down in front of the bulldozer in an effort to stop the coming destruction.

You would take the time to listen to us, about what groups are, and how groups are used, instead of spouting gobbledygook about how YOU think they are used. You have no idea, you imply we don’t use them, use them only in mail, or that they are largely unused.

You don’t seem to care that when that bulldozer rolls over us and takes down our groups, tens of thousands of voices will be silenced as the speck of dust is blown to the ground.

We thank you for being part of the Yahoo Groups community and look forward to continuing to provide ways for you to connect with one another about your shared interests and passions.

FALSE. Nah, you just say that because it sounds good in a sound bite. You want to prove you mean it? STOP this deadline. STOP this destruction. Don’t make the groups private. DON’T make them  invitation only. LET people archive them any way they can. OPEN a dialogue with us.

THAT is what would be a good start.

Nightowl >8#

Owner/Moderator Mods and Members
Leader of the Yahoo Groups Users Crusade


Well, Verizon, you decided to try and make yourself look better by extending the deadline to January 31st, 2020 for Yahoo Groups.

But you can’t fool me. I haven’t fought this fight for 6 years to be that easily duped. I know what you’re really up to, and it won’t work. You think if you announce that you’re extending the deadline that it will make you look good, and that we will back off. 

I promise you, that’s not going to happen.

You see, first of all, you told the media, not me, not us, not changed the announcement in the Yahoo Groups that hovers over everything like its about to destroy us.  So why not tell US? Why didn’t my contact e-mail me?

Well, I know why. Because we would understand it’s not going to fix the problem. See, you didn’t make it as clear to the media as you could have. So what sounds like a really good thing is in reality, useless. And here’s why:

The minute you make all our groups private on December 14th, you will make it completely impossible for some users to rescue their data. Because if it’s private, and the owner is gone, we won’t be able to copy and paste posts, or attempt to copy photos, etc. They will be cut off from us especially on cases where the moderator or owner have been locked out of their groups. And this happens more than you care to know.

Since you’ve made the dialogue stop on the site, you’ve made it really hard to be able to communicate with one another about what to do because it’s impossible to trust communication with the unreliable e-mail service we have for Yahoo Groups.

And when you try to force us to rely only on your broken download tool, you will ensure that we will never get our archives back intact, because all that you send is every post one person ever made. It’s not a Chronological Archive of each group. It’s a copy of what one person posted. And that makes it pretty useless in that case, because there is no context.

This is NOT a fix. This is a sham, and a cover-up, you’re trying to make the public think you are doing something great, when it’s not. This will not allow the archivists who have been asked by the owners to rescue the content, which is what is desperately needed, and fast.

So Verizon, I know what you are about. You are no better than Yahoo who abused us Groups Users for 6 years. They turned us into guinea pigs, flipped our groups, stressed the elderly, gave panic and PTSD attacks to Veterans, and seizures to the disabled. They were heartless and cruel.

And no one helped us. We were stuck there, trying to protect our precious archives, on a broken platform for 6 years. And all you have done so far with this situation, is to finally prove to me you are just as cruel as they were.

Because after they hid our beautiful Classic Groups from us, and people found ways in to get to it, Yahoo slammed and barred that trapdoor. And when we found another one, they blocked it too. And when we complained in the “Trench” known as User Voice, Yahoo tried to delete our complaints and hide the truth. But I had copied it all.

Do you really want to be like them? Do you seriously want to hitch your wagon to the burned out NEO star that was Mayer’s Shiny Vision of Yahoo Groups? Do you really want to be viewed as simply uncaring? Well, you’re on your way to becoming just that.

And as for us? We aren’t giving up, and we aren’t letting up. If you think people were raising an outcry the last two days, just wait. We are going to call and write and tweet and scream it to the world that we deserve better! 

And we aren’t going to stop until we have safely rescued our archives and taken them to a better place, somewhere we know they are safe and cared about, not somewhere where a heartless company wants to toss them and us, in the trash.

So I will say it again. If you want this to stop, Just drop the ban. Let the archivers save our groups. Stop blocking us at every turn, and give us until May 14, 2020 to accomplish it. And don’t give me that BS about Terms Of Service. Your Terms Of Service weren’t being applied to us in 2013, when Yahoo was violating them left and right and hurting people.

You just plan to toss it all in the trash, so let us in to retrieve it. Then it will be off your hands, you won’t have to worry about it being costly to store it, and we’ll be out of your way, and it will be a win win for all of us.

So, do you want to be a hero, and be seen as doing the right and best humane thing? Or do you want to be hitched to the flaming star called Yahoo, that’s falling from the sky.

Once again, it’s your call. But we are not going anywhere. Not without our precious Classic Groups Archives.

Nightowl >8#





 Okay, I have written a letter to Verizon explaining that we are aware of the banning of accounts, and blocking of archiving tools. I have also told them that if these accounts and tools were blocked by accident, i.e. an automatic trigger or something, just unban and unblock us. Below is the letter:

Good evening (name edited)

I’m updating (name edited) & Verizon on what is going on with Yahoo Groups.

Yesterday, 128 people who had joined over 30,000 Yahoo groups to archive them, were banned. We can only assume this was a deliberate act from Verizon/Yahoo. If it was not, and was triggered accidentally, then just unban them.

All of the created scripts that the archivers were using to rescue archives, working around the clock, have also been thwarted. Again, if this is an accidental thing, just stop blocking them.

The download archive offered from Verizon/Yahoo is not enough, it is incomplete, it comes with bad viruses for many members, it is extremely hard to understand by regular members, and is unacceptable. It doesn’t even rescue all the photos, which have to be rescued by downloading them one at a time. In a group with thousands of photos, you can hopefully understand that it would be impossible to do within the 9 days we have left.

So if Verizon has said that it is perfectly fine that we can have our archives from them, then it should be perfectly fine that we get them rescued any way we can.

If the problem is that all our attempts to rescue our archives in the time we have left is causing an overload or strain on your servers, then stop making us HAVE to work around the clock, and GIVE US MORE TIME. We are asking to have until May 14th, 2020 to get our archives and leave. We have no interest in remaining as mailing lists on the site. Here’s why:

We can’t create posts on the site, we can’t upload anything anymore, and we can’t communicate in real time using e-mail because it is faulty, sometimes taking 3 days to get to the group, putting everything out of order.

This is not how we use our Yahoo Groups. We used them as a searchable archive, and yes, I was able to search my group, but it’s never going to be able to be added to, which was the point.

Databases, photos, and files were hugely important to the running of the group, as was the calendar function that sent out messages on a timed basis. We are of the understanding that ALL of that will be gone.

Bottom line. This is not what Yahoo Groups were, or are. You will be destroying a historical useful, functional slice of Internet history, and that is not acceptable to us either.

So we will be contacting Executives, Shareholders, Board Members, Advertisers, & Watchdog Groups, and also our story will be in the Washington Post.

In the 6+ years that we have dealt with Yahoo (and later Verizon), we have always attempted to make sure our door is open to cooperative communication. If Verizon wants to make it all calm down, just unban the people you banned, allow new posting from the site, so we can more effectively communicate, (just messages, not other things), allow people to join without an invitation, give us until May 14th, 2020 to get them, and stop blocking us at every turn.  Then we will get our archives and be on our way.


Brenda Fowler
Nightowl >8#


Project Open Doors’ Plea for Help (An Open Letter)

The OTW Open Doors Committee has sent the following letter to leadership at Verizon to request that they extend the deadline for deletion of existing archives of Yahoo Groups files and messages by at least six months.


Dear Verizon,

We are writing regarding the impending closure of Yahoo Groups on behalf of the Organization for Transformative Works (OTW), a nonprofit organization run by and for fans to provide access to and preserve the history of fanworks and fan cultures.

Due to its unique status as a large nonprofit focused on fandom advocacy, the OTW has a major presence in fandom. The OTW is made up of over 800 volunteers from all over the world, and our best-known project, the Archive of Our Own (AO3), has over five million fanworks, two million registered users, and over 1.4 million unique visitors per month. This year, the AO3 won a Hugo Award for Best Related Work, and, along with Yahoo, was listed by Popular Mechanics as one of the 50 most important websites of all time ( Other OTW projects include Fanlore, the fandom history wiki, and Open Doors, which rescues fanworks archives that are at risk of disappearing from the Internet.

The OTW’s main concern regarding the effective closure of Yahoo Groups is for its long-term impact on online fandom history and online history as a whole. Yahoo Groups was a fandom hub for more than two decades, and many of the fanworks saved there are not duplicated anywhere else, to say nothing of the conversations and other ephemera. While the OTW is primarily concerned with fandom, there are over 5 million Groups in total with countless messages and files, and hundreds of millions of people who will be affected by the loss of almost 20 years of data and history.

Open Doors and Fanlore, among other projects, are currently working hard to help preserve these works, messages, and other data, but saving everything before the time limit is simply impossible. Open Doors normally receives one or two requests each month from moderators seeking to transfer their archives to the AO3; since the announcement on October 16 that Yahoo Groups was closing, we have received over 40 requests from Yahoo Groups moderators alone.

We are using all of our official channels to inform people about the closure, as well as coordinating with other preservation projects such as YahooGeddon and the Archive Team. We are also fielding requests from members and moderators to help download and save files and messages from their Groups, and discussing the creation of a dark archive to store these downloads until more permanent methods of preservation can be found. Unfortunately, the Archive Team’s automated download program has been blocked by the Yahoo Groups servers, so we are forced to do what we can by hand and are therefore extremely limited in what we can save.

Saving Yahoo Groups is going to require a great deal more time and support from Verizon. Although Verizon promised users they could download their Groups data via the Privacy Dashboard, many users are being told, “Your download request has been completed, but no data of this type is available in your account.” The GetMyData sets are also incomplete, often missing files and photos. Instead, people are having to copy-paste, manually download, or utilize specialized software in order to save their Groups. To make matters worse, because Verizon has chosen to limit downloads to a few weeks, moderator and members, along with the Archive Team and Wayback Machine, are being locked out or blocked and prevented from accessing their data.

Furthermore, many Groups—especially in the EU, South America, and Asia—have not yet been informed of the Yahoo Groups closure. This is in part because Verizon has not made an official, widely posted announcement and in part because the Yahoo Groups mailing lists have been broken since 2013, with mail arriving days or weeks late, or not at all.

Therefore, Verizon needs to extend the deadline to allow time to get the word out to Yahoo Groups owners about the closure, time to fix its download request feature, and time for users to access their data. Based on the number of groups these teams’ combined efforts are trying to save, the rate at which they are being saved, and the fact that many Yahoo Group moderators are still being informed of the closure, we are requesting that six months be added to Verizon’s deadline, so that data from Yahoo Groups will not be deleted until May 14, 2020.

There is a long history of large websites losing information without a trace. One of Open Doors’ first projects was a last-minute scramble to rescue GeoCities sites. MySpace deleting a decade of content is a recent example. This is not uncommon in new media that is not yet considered worthy of preservation, but with your assistance, Yahoo Groups can be saved from being the latest entry on a tragic list of websites that simply disappeared forever. Other tech companies have shown a callous disregard for the value of user’s memories, experiences, and history, but by granting this extension, Verizon can demonstrate that it truly values its users and the important role that Yahoo Groups has played in their online lives.


The Organization for Transformative Works


You can view this information from the authors, by visiting their blog here.