About this Author
Ernest Miller Ernest Miller pursues research and writing on cyberlaw, intellectual property, and First Amendment issues. Mr. Miller attended the U.S. Naval Academy before attending Yale Law School, where he was president and co-founder of the Law and Technology Society, and founded the technology law and policy news site LawMeme. He is a fellow of the Information Society Project at Yale Law School. Ernest Miller's blog postings can also be found @

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« Opening Networks to Censorship in Order to Keep Them Closed | Main | Star Trek and Pedophilia Claim Followup »

May 03, 2005

Yahoo! Group Disappears Into the Ether ...

Posted by Ernest Miller

SciFiNoir was a web community/discussion list formed on Yahoo! in December, 1999, and had nearly 500 members. It was a discussion list for speculative fiction topics ranging from Anime to Zardoz.

Last Friday, April 29th, this long running discussion list and its archives simply disappeared in the ether when Yahoo! cancelled the group's existence. No warning or reason was given, though the group speculates it was related to series of posts regarding the Star Trek/Pedophilia issue (LA Times Claim About Pedophiles Wrong).

Five years of posts, artwork, stories, etc., simply gone, apparently at the whim of Yahoo! What the heck is Yahoo! thinking? I can see reasons that posts and even entire groups would be eliminated, but shouldn't there be a little more care taken when such a decision to eliminate a long running group is made? Should the entire history of the discussion group just disappear? Shouldn't an offer be made to allow the group history to be archived somewhere else?

Sad, sad, sad.

Comments (1) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Freedom of Expression


1. Tracey de Morsella on May 5, 2005 10:08 AM writes...

Thanks for covering the deletion of my list. I am glad that someone is raising important issues about intellectual property rights and the fact that you don't have any when you use yahoo.

While I did not use my yahoo email much, it is important to note that while yahoo is throwing more space for emails as owners of yahoo email in an attempt to compete with google, they are not informing email owners that they do not own any of the emails, the address book, or other files contained in those email boxes they are hyping....


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