We finally have something to be excited about during these dark days of the current economy. Back in the dark ages of the internet, when most people still had to “dial in” while listening to some strange device making weird sounds in order to go on the net, there were services that allowed people with absolutely no knowledge on web design to create and host webpages. One of those services was GeoCities.
Everybody who has been on the internet long enough remembers the heydays of services like GeoCities, Angelfire, and Tripod. Endless barrages of animated .gifs, banner tags, fixed backgrounds with scrolling text, frames with scrollbars, suicide-inducing fonts… Those were dark times, my friends, and if you don’t recall them, or never experienced them, I envy you.
The last few years you really had to look very hard to find websites like that. Still, every now and then, Google would dredge up a GeoCities website, and if you were to casually click on the link without thinking, you’d be blind for three days.
GeoCities started out as Beverly Hills Internet, founded by David Bohnett and John Rezner in the winter of 1995. They wanted to create a virtual community, full of virtual cities that corresponded to real-world locations; technology sites were hosted in “SiliconValley”, entertainment ones in “Hollywood”, and so on. GeoCities was later purchased by Yahoo!, and ever since, it has been slowly declining, withering away into irrelevance.
Yahoo! has finally pulled the plug on GeoCities. Well, it will pull the plug officially later this year, but it already no longer accepts new sign-ups. Yahoo! states that people can still “enjoy” (that’s just cruel) their sites today, but that it will all be gone later this year.
Obituaries in the comments, please.