Thinking about Yahoo

I almost put in a copy of Northern Exposure today. My Northern Exposure DVD set has been used from time to time. It was a quality purchase. The series does not appear to be available to stream or on Blu-ray. Northern Exposure is hands down one of my favorite television programs of all time.

The story of Yahoo should have been different. It should have played out in a different way. It should have been better. It should have been more about the potential of technology vs. the reality of squandered opportunity. The rise of the Yahoo corporation should have been enough to stave off the fall for decades. Yahoo become a cultural touchstone. The brand was well known and it had services people used. I used a variety of Yahoo services; games, email, and chat. I played chess with people all over the world via Yahoo games. The chess service is apparently shutting down. I expected more from the Yahoo team. Branding alone is not a business model. For millions of people the Yahoo brand stands apart from the services it provides. It stands disconnected from a defined purpose. That is a business lesson worth understanding.

Northern Exposure will be enjoyed for generations to come. People will continue to be introduced to the television show. Yahoo as a corporation appears to be fading away.