Yahoo Announces Clues Product and Updates Privacy Policy

Yahoo announced a new search product yesterday, Yahoo! Clues.

Yahoo search engine enhancement

Yahoo! Clues Beta

It offers new features such as trend tracking options. Clues is available as a beta release, and has similar functionality to features offered by Google’s search engine since 2008.

While on the main page for Clues, I noted that the link for the Yahoo! Privacy Policy was highlighted in red and prefixed with an Updated label. I looked further, and was very favorably impressed with Yahoo’s cleaner page design, in comparison to many of Google’s policy and help pages. Somehow I always end up clicking link after link to find what I need on Google help pages. Unfortunately, I usually get distracted along the way!

In contrast, most Yahoo information pages, including the Privacy Policy, are very readable, with most content accessible from a single screen. While Yahoo’s data collection practices might not be substantively different from Google’s (although I am not certain, as I have not perused Yahoo’s policy in enough detail), Yahoo’s page layouts are much easier to negotiate. This makes the underlying content seem more honest, less like there is something hidden, although there is no reason to assume that is Google’s intent.

The other reason for a revised privacy policy is Yahoo’s integration with Microsoft Bing, for both “regular” and sponsored search.  The privacy policy page has details about what information is shared with Microsoft when using the combined Yahoo-Bing search engine.

The policy page provides instructions for opting out of content served advertising. There are also instructions and a link if you want to remove your webpage or sites from appearing as a search result.

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All comments welcomed! Less enthusiastic about spam though.

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