Yahoo Answers, still

Yahoo Answers is celebrating “one year of knowledge and success.”Two weeks ago, Google stopped answering, ceasing its Google Answers “experiment.

Yahoo Answers is celebrating “one year of knowledge and success.”

Two weeks ago, Google stopped answering, ceasing its Google Answers “experiment.” Google hailed the “questions posed” over the past four years at Google Answers, but gave no indication as to why it was time to say “Adieu to Google Answers.”

Google may no longer be “discovering what questions are on people’s minds,” but Yahoo continues, big time.

Yahoo CEO Terry Semel proudly declared in his Q3 conference call that “Yahoo has been a pioneer in social media, ” as I reported in “Semel on Yahoo: We lead in social media,” citing Yahoo Answers, in particular:

Yahoo Answers, which we developed internally, is alone as a standalone, one of the largest communities and social media on the web. Answers surpassed 60 million unique users, monthly users, and 120 million answers worldwide just 10 months after it launched, and is now available in 18 countries and nine languages.

Why is Yahoo Answers usage thriving?

To commemorate its one year mark, Yahoo and Harris Interactive surveyed 2300 U.S. adults to gauge how people look for “answers” online. Key findings:

33% of online adults have used a Q & A site,

Half of those who use Q & A sites say that information from the sites influence decisions they make,

96% of online adults have searched for current and breaking news on the Internet, 83% for reviews of consumer electronics, 82% for advice on travel or trip planning, 75% for restaurant or hotel reviews and recommendations, 74% for do-it-yourself home improvement tips,

81% of online adults would be more likely to turn to the Internet for answers to specific questions if the service was free, 79% if they could get answers in minutes, 77% if  they needed an answer to something their friends or family aren’t familiar with,  43% if they could get individual answers from many people.

Yahoo touts its Answers “taps into the knowledge of individuals to benefit the greater group by providing online users many answers to their questions, increasing the likelihood that people will find what they are looking for,” and is therefore well positioned for further growth.

Tomi Poutanen, director of product management for Yahoo Social Search:

This survey indicates the adoption of new Q & A sites like Yahoo Answers, as well as consumers’ desire for responses and knowledge from many people. Yahoo Answers does exactly that, it connects people to the information they’re seeking with those who know it among the millions of people in the Yahoo Answers community.

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