Google Answers proved to be an unlimited source of information for my science column, Not Scientific Science, during the years. The concept of the service is quite simple. You’ve got a question so you just ask it and you pay a certain amount of money. The more money you’re prepared to spend on the question, the better and more in depth the answer you’ll get. And it should be noted that the questions are answered by a specialist employed (probably on a freelance basis) by Google.
When I discovered Yahoo! Answers some times back though, I got completely entangled in the community. Community. That was the exact thing that Google Answers could never achieve. At Yahoo! Answers we are a community and everyone asks questions and answers other questions. The main disadvantage of Yahoo! Answers is that you do sometimes get some very silly answers to your questions and during numerous occasions, the answers are completely erronous. Also, more technical questions tend to be left unanswered.
Obviously I could list along all the problems with Yahoo! Answers as compared with the Google version but the fact remains that Yahoo!’s won the battle this time and I’m quite glad at Yahoo! Answers.
It’s funny how the mastermind behind this Answers service dies off while the one who copied lives on!
UPDATE: And Yahoo! is already inviting the reseachers of Google Answers (specialists, as I call them) to join the Yahoo! community. I just love those fights amongst those big companies. Awesome.
From Yahoo! blog:
Got Answers and Nowhere to Share Them?
Today we learned that Google Answers is closing. That’s a shame because some great knowledge was created on that service by the Google Answers Researchers.
So, this is an open invitation for those researchers to join us.
Please consider sharing your knowledge with millions of people on
Yahoo! Answers; connect with users with shared interests; get answers
to all your questions; and help build the world’s most vibrant and
The folks who are researchers and information specialists have been
at this longer than us, and there’s a lot we can learn from you. We’ve
set up a Yahoo! Group for former Google Answers Researchers and we’d prefer that one of the exGARs help moderate the group.
Finally, we’re also going to be meeting up with some of the most
prolific Yahoo! Answers users here at the Sunnyvale campus on
Wednesday, December 13. And we’d like Google Answers researchers to
join us, tell us what you think and get to know what we’re doing here.
Please drop us a line!
We look forward to seeing you on Yahoo! Answers!
Yahoo! Social Search
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