Why does Yahoo exclude Mac Safari users?

“I have been among the developers and observers who have praised Yahoo for the technical strength of their recently launched User Interface Library. In my tests for the Ajax/DHTML Scorecard project in March, Yahoo’s library was a clear ‘A’ in its cross-browser credentials, and I was very impressed with Yahoo’s development team, which published clear and exacting browser standards for their library. According to Yahoo’s own Graded Browser Support table, Safari is an A-graded browser, meaning it achieves the highest level of support possible with the Yahoo interface library,” Leland Scott writes for Musings from Mars. “Clearly, the thought that went into this table is impressive, and the authors conclude the explanation that precedes the table itself with an appropriate quote from Tim Berners-Lee on the importance of cross-browser support.”

“Anyone who slaps a ‘this page is best viewed with Browser X’ label on a Web page appears to be yearning for the bad old days, before the Web, when you had very little chance of reading a document written on another computer, another word processor, or another network.” – Tim Berners-Lee

“It is therefore highly disappointing and disillusioning to discover tonight that Yahoo has released a preview of its new, Ajax-enabled home page with support only for Internet Explorer 6.0 and Firefox 1.5. The only logic one can use to justify such a move is based on a totally PC-centric viewpoint, which argues that only Windows users are worth troubling with, since they comprise the vast majority of potential viewers. But this is precisely the viewpoint that must cease if Web 2.0 is to become the fertile melting ground for truly cross-platform interdependence that it wants to be. It’s simply not the viewpoint of any company that really cares about Berners-Lee’s vision or about the millions of users on platforms other than the virus- and malware-riddled mess that is Microsoft Windows today,” Scott writes.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Based on our site stats, quite a strong sample of Mac users, Safari is used by the large majority of Mac users today. It is the strong number three browser on all the Web after IE and Firefox – despite being a Mac-only browser. Yahoo, and any other company that does a poor job of supporting everyone, is a disappointment, and we Mac users – a group proven to have above average discretionary income and the willingness to spend it (at least on quality products and services) – should remember companies that fail to include all users. We will remember.

We respect our customers above all else and never forget that they come to us by choice. We share a personal responsibility to maintain our customers’ loyalty and trust. We listen and respond to our customers and seek to exceed their expectations.Yahoo! – What We Value

It’s not just Yahoo’s preview site that won’t work correctly; Yahoo games and other services frequently don’t work or work well on anything but Windows Internet Explorer. It’s been like this for years. It takes virtually no extra effort to code a site to work for all users when that is one of your goals at the outset. Those companies that ignore us should be ignored by us until they wise up and include all users. Do the right and smart thing, Yahoo. Please use Yahoo’s simple web contact form to request that they make their services fully available to all here: http://docs.yahoo.com/info/support/contacts/ideas.html

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71 Comments

  1. Personally I would have thought any big company like yahoo who has anything to do with search would want their sites to be cross browser and use standards. Purely because if they use it, it in turn then promotes the use of good markup etc throughout the web. Surely this must then make it easier for them to crawl sites and make their results more accurate.

    If you think regular search results are inaccurate just try an image search. The stuff you get back is crap because nothing is labelled/named properly, no decent metadata and so on.

  2. Thankfully IDGAD about Yahoo, and if there was going to ever be a chance that I would, its now gone – I’m not even curious enough to go look, and I’ve pretty much written it off as a place to explore in the future.

    So YAHOO!

  3. I haven’t given Yahoo (anything) the time of day since about five years ago.

    It encapsulates most of what I hate about some websites – too busy, over-engineered and designed to attract teenagers.

    Good luck to ’em.

  4. I don’t quite see the point. Firefox is available for OS X after all, and it’s free. Besides, this is a preview, this is a beta; I just visited the site with Opera, and it says something like:

    “Unfortunately you are using a browser we are not supporting today — check back in a few weeks.”

    So, again, what’s the point?

  5. Don’t get you knickers in a twist. According to the site, they plan to support additional browser soon. I’m guessing that means Safari, dontcha think? I mean, are they going to support Opera before Safari? I don’t think so.

  6. OK … I was nice.

    I even told them my Yahoo! email address – though I foolishly signed up for the beta, which means I have to switch to Firefox to read mail sent to that address. My history with Yahoo! goes back a lot of years. It’s been mostly good, but I don’t count on them any more.

    I do well over 90% of my personal browsing with Safari, maybe half of the rest with Firefox. I don’t get to my Yahoo! mail nearly as often as I used to.

  7. Yahoo doesn’t attract the same kind of traffic it did in the late ’90s. Google has replaced them as the search engine of choice, and frankly all of the services offered by Yahoo can be found other places.

    MDN Word: Couldn’t

    “Couldn’t care if Yahoo supports Safari or not”

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