Yahoo Strikes A Twitter Deal, Tweets About It Early To Screw Those Who Agreed To Embargo

For the past two days, Yahoo has been trying to get me to agree to an embargo on some piece of news they had for tonight. As you probably know, we hate embargoes, so I wasn’t about to accept it. Good thing. Not only did the news leak out almost 5 hours early, but actually, Yahoo itself was giving people hints on Twitter all day, and encouraging people to take guesses to break the embargo on Twitter. And yes, the news is a deal with Twitter.

So first, the news: Yahoo and Twitter have reached an agreement to share data between their properties. That’s great. Yahoo is only a few months behind Google and Microsoft (Bing) doing the same thing. And really, I’m not entirely sure why some kind of special deal was needed. For search, Bing is about to take over the data aspect for Yahoo, and that will very likely include the Twitter data. Meanwhile, Yahoo’s frontend elements and services already include Twitter integration, including Flickr. Plus, isn’t Facebook Connect handling all the social stuff for Yahoo soon anyway?

Well, I’ll wait for the press release coming in 4 hours for more details about that (see below).

The more amusing angle to me is not only the embargo break, but the fact that Yahoo is so starved for attention, they’re resorting to playing games with their Twitter followers to make them guess embargoed news. Here are the first four of five clues that Yahoo tweeted out today:

  • Clue #1/5: Who has approx 29,000 followers as of this morning? #ybignews
  • Clue #2/5: What kind of “moon” had teen moviegoers swooning last fall? #ybignews
  • Clue #3/5: Who might you greet with a friendly “howdy”? #ybignews (use hashtag for previous clues)
  • Clue #4/5:What’s both a sugar substitute & a mathematical symbol? #ybignews (use hashtag for previous clues-forms a phrase)

Our own Jason Kincaid is a master of reading these clues (and apparently knows something about the Twilight saga). Here are the answers:

  • 1: Yahoo
  • 2: New
  • 3: Partner
  • 4: Equal

And, of course, 5, which hasn’t been released yet, will equal “Twitter” in some way. And those quick enough on the uptake could probably figure out that since Yahoo was using Twitter to hint this new deal, the partner is in fact, Twitter.

Oh, Yahoo, thankfully you have MySpace to make you look not-so-bad by comparison (cycling team and all). As for Twitter, this is likely another solid revenue stream for the hot startup that now has the money-making engines going (with more coming soon).

And here’s the full release for those interested in the actual news:

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Feb. 23, 2010 – As part of its ongoing commitment to be the center of people’s online lives, Yahoo Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) today announced a global partnership with Twitter to integrate Twitter’s real-time social experiences with more than 600 million people in Yahoo!’s global network. The integration is part of Yahoo!’s commitment to provide personally relevant information to people, from sources across the Web.

A little bird told me: @yahoo is the place to tweet and be tweeted

This partnership includes three primary elements:

  1. People will be able to access their personal Twitter feeds across Yahoo!’s many products and properties, including the homepage, Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! Sports, and others, letting them check in more easily on what’s happening with the people and things they care about while on Yahoo!.
  2. People will be able to update their Twitter status and share content from Yahoo! in their Twitter stream, so they can easily share their Yahoo! experiences with their friends and followers on Twitter.
  3. Yahoo! Search and Yahoo! media properties like News, Finance, Entertainment, and Sports will include real-time public Twitter updates across a variety of topics. Yahoo! Search users will immediately see real-time Twitter results today; go to Yahoo! and try it out.

Tweet and shout: @yahoo pumps up the social volume

Today’s Twitter partnership, along with Yahoo!’s recently announced Facebook relationship, will transform Yahoo! into a highly customizable social experience that lets people bring together and unify their activity from their many social experiences across the Web. Because of these connections, anyone with a Yahoo! ID can update multiple social networks simultaneously and stay in touch with the people and information that matter most at every moment of the day.

“Let me try to capture the enormity of this integration in 140 characters or less: We’re turning the key to the online social universe — you will find the most personally relevant experiences through Yahoo!,” said Bryan Lamkin, senior vice president, consumer products group, Yahoo!. “We’re also simplifying people’s lives by bringing their social worlds — and the world —- together for easy access.”

Add an exclamation point to your tweets

The Twitter integration also provides full access to the complete Twitter public data stream, which Yahoo! will use to improve the relevance and freshness of content across Yahoo! properties. This will drive deeper user engagement, and create new and compelling opportunities for developers, advertisers, and publishers.

“The information in one single tweet can travel light-years farther with this Yahoo! integration.” said Twitter cofounder, Biz Stone. “Tweets in more places brings relevance where and when you need it most.”

The real-time Search integration is available immediately. Other parts of the integration are expected to launch later this year.
About Yahoo!

Yahoo! attracts hundreds of millions of users every month through its innovative technology and engaging content and services, making it one of the most trafficked Internet destinations and a world-class online media company. Yahoo!’s vision is to be the center of people’s online lives by delivering personally relevant, meaningful Internet experiences. Yahoo! is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. For more information, visit or the company’s blog, Yodel Anecdotal (

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