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Science Humor Webring

History of the Science Humor Webring

[The beginning] [1999 till August 2000] [Yahoo! Webring integration] [Split rings]

The effects of the integration of Webring with Yahoo

[Another compagny takeover] [The integration]

Another company takeover

In 1998 Webring was taken over by Geocities, without any visible results. There was a lot of scared talk on ringmaster-l, but nothing much changed. In January 1999 we received a new mail from Webring, telling the ringmasters that Yahoo had acquired Geocities and that as a result Webring could give better service and would be visible from Yahoo. A very good thing, we were told. Here is the complete mail. Once again the scared talk began but nothing much happened.

During the next year, there were small changes in the management of the rings, improvements in my opinion.

The integration

During a few days in August 2000 an untitled mail from Yahoo was sent to all ringmasters en site owners in no particular order telling Webring was being integrated in Yahoo and everybody, not only the webmasters but also the site owners should get a Yahoo ID (whatever that was) and o what a wonderfull oportunity that was for us! Here is the complete mail

The almost dead ringmaster-l mailing list came to life again. A lot of people talked of moving to other webring organisations like RingSurf or Bravenet and the possibility of setting up your own webring with cgi scrips (for instance with Ringlink). There was als discusion on two other platforms Yahoo! Clubs webringnews and ringmgr@eGroups.com. I was a member of neither, but Ed McGuire told ringmaster-l about what was going on there. Another of his ideas was an independent organisation of ringmakers (ringmakers - Independent Organization of Ring-linked Web Ringmasters and Sitemasters), which started to take members at the end of August.

What did I do? Nothing. I could not influence Yahoo. Moving somewhere else meant making more than 40 people change their website, which does not seem easy to me. There was no time mentioned in the mail; it could be a year before anything happened. It was a month.

At september the first, Yahoo sent a second mail, announcing the change-over on Tuesday, September 5, 2000 at 11:00 a.m. PST. From that moment on webring management could only be done with a Yahoo ID. New ringmembers also needed a Yahoo ID. Old ringmembers could do without one for some months (exact time unknown). A new side bar for ringnavigation would be there and the accursed locking would be gone (I guess they moved over to a standard relational database). Here is the complete mail. People started to delete their ring or move away.

There was nothing to see on the status report on the webring site and no advance possibility for integration. I would have considered getting independent with the ringlink scripts, but I cannot use cgi on my site. I waited.

On Thursday the 7th, I accessed webring-management again and was immediately moved to Yahoo to get the (in)famous Yahoo! ID. After getting that I could use my webring account and password to "associate" the science humor webring with Yahoo. I had to choose a category before continuing, but there where only a fraction of the Yahoo categories. My website itself is in the "Science Humor" category. That did not exist here. The ring was in the science category, but that was not allowed now. I could not find a humor category under recreation or home. Under groups, "intellectuals"seemed closest, but would not make any sense. The help said, I should make as good a choice as possible and Yahoo could change it at will to a better fitting or especially made new category. So I put it in mathematics, trusting in the wisdom of Yahoo to change it. (I also sent them a mail, suggesting either using the normal Yahoo categories or introducing other categories at every level. Lots of other people had this kind of problems, for instance a dog ring with their particular breed of dog not listed

So, now I was in Yahoo!webring and could start manage my ring. You think. The ring was there, but I could do nothing but associate my own site with the ring. I logged out and went to my yahoo, as was told in the e-mail Yahoo had sent me on creating the ID. No webring to be found. Next I tried my old webring link again, this moved me again to yahoo webring navigation. The webring was visible. Clicking on management gave me the possibility to edit my site, clicking on the ringname itself gave me the possibility to manage the ring. Everything seemed to work fine. All sites in the ring and the one in the queue were still there. I had nothing real to do, but everything seemed in order.

The good points:

The bad points:

I have lost all control over the ring.

It seems I am lucky. Other people cannot associate their ring or it does not work after associating. Many ringmasters using Internet Explorer cannot do anything in the ring, while they can with Netscape. (I will not even speculate about Lynx), ringmasters are not notified when people join the queue.James Huggins collected the problems in James S. Huggins' WebRing Problem List

For the moment the ring is still working. I wonder what will happen with new members and the one site in the queue.

As I now knew the situation, it became time to notify the ring-members with the following mail:

X-Sender: jcdverha@pop.xs4all.nl
X-Mailer: QUALCOMM Windows Eudora Light Version 3.0.5 (32)
Date: Thu, 07 Sep 2000 21:36:31 +0200
To: Science humor webring members
From: Joachim Verhagen
Subject: science humor webring and Yahoo

You might have noticed that Geocities has taken over webring and Yahoo has taken over Geocieties some time ago. Now Yahoo is integrating the webrings in the Yahoo system and is sending all ringmembers mail about it.

What do you need to do?


For the moment the ring keeps working whether you have a Yahoo id or not. If you wish to associate an existing id with the ring, you can do it, but at the moment it is not necessary. It is only necessary for the ring manager (that is me). This will probably change in the future, but how far in the future is unknown. I will let you know when I know more.

I am not really happy about all this and might decide to move the ring to another system if the html-code for the ring has to be changed. In my opinion I have a relation with Webring (or Yahoo) and you only with me, but Yahoo seems determined to change that.

If you have any opinion about this, let me know.

With kind regards,

Joachim Verhagen (manager Science Humor Webring)

Joachim Verhagen (joachim.verhagen@xs4all.nl)
WWW: http://www.xs4all.nl/~jcdverha/ (with science humor)

Finally I joined the Ringmakers organisation .

After two days of testing and checking things out, I decided to move to RingSurf.

Last change: September 10, 2000

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[The beginning] [1999 till August 2000] [Yahoo! Webring integration] [Split rings]

Comments to the maintainer of the Science Humor Webring (Joachim Verhagen)

This page is maintained by Joachim Verhagen