Yahoo!’s GeoCities website service finally closed it’s doors yesterday (26th Ocotober) – an amazing 15 years after it was created.
In its original form, site users selected a “city” in which to place their web pages. The “cities” were named after real cities or regions according to their content—for example, computer-related sites were placed in “SiliconValley” and those dealing with entertainment were assigned to “Hollywood”—hence the name of the site.
GeoCities since became one of the main places to go for people to go to create simple websites. The ease of setting up your own website was unreal. It was a case of simply registering an account, choosing a template and adding some content.
GeoCities websites, however, were always of poor quality. The people who created them often had no idea or knowledge of web design or development. These ‘websites’ would often have animated GIFs plastered from header to footer, sparkly text and moving content all over the place. It became even more of a headache when businesses would use these ugly templates as the web-front of their business. Luckily times have changed, and marketing teams have discovered that new and fresh approaches were needed – and that the web was fast becoming one of the most popular forms of advertising and information.
On April 23, 2009, Yahoo! announced that it would be closing GeoCities, and stopped accepting new registrations, though the existing GeoCities accounts remained active.
As current GeoCities websites remain active, it is often nice to see what the average user-created website looked like only 10 years ago. Here are some examples for your viewing ‘pleasure’: