Classic is in the Past
Yahoo has been going through a string of updates lately that started after CEO Marisa Mayer was hired in early 2012. The first of these updates was last December when the company announced it had updated its email platform with a cleaner look and functionality.
Despite this change, the company still allowed users to use Yahoo Mail Classic, but as of today they will have to switch to the new version.
According to a post on the company's help page those who are still using older versions of Yahoo Mail will be getting an notification email telling them they are required to update their Yahoo Mail account.
A New Policy Isn't Always a Good Thing
While Yahoo aims to improve the usability and customer appeal of its products, it also want to make sure that users are secure and that marketers are able to to target ads based on a person's email activity.
The terms of services and policy guidelines say that any content sent through the Yahoo system will automatically be scanned so that the company can use this information for targeted advertising and abuse protection.
While updated security is a good thing, the idea that someone else is looking at a person's email hasn't been well received.
The decision to scan and analyse user mails by the company has not gone down well with users and the gruff way in which Yahoo is making the new design mandatory is bound to cause more grumbling,” said Nishtha Kanal.
A Yahoo Solution
Targeted advertising isn't for everyone, so those Yahoo users who don’t like it can opt out of the service through the Ad Interest Manager section of their settings, but emails will still be scanned for security purposes.
Even still, users may not like and therefore not want to use the new Yahoo Mail at all, so the company has offered a few suggestions. Users can either close their account completely or use an IMAP program to access Yahoo from a different client, such as a Outlook or Mac Mail -- but emails will still be scanned and monitored by Yahoo.
Also, for those who have a Mail Plus account and don't want to continue using Yahoo, they can cancel their subscription and are eligible for a refund.
Yahoo might be giving users the option to opt-out of its service for another email client and opt out of interest and context based marketing, but Lily Newman notes that Yahoo isn’t the first company to have targeted email-based advertising.
It's important to stay on top of privacy policies and know what companies are doing with the personal data housed on their servers, but Yahoo is far from the first major email provider to scan messages as part of data mining for targeted ads,” she said.
Email Image courtesy iQoncept (Shutterstock)