An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

Summary: Can you imagine your email without a search box? I couldn't until my Yahoo Mail account lost its search mojo.


Can you imagine your email without a search box? I couldn't until my Yahoo Mail account lost its search mojo.

Email becomes useless without a functional search. And to make matters worse I had to find invites to one (yes there are three) fantasy football leagues. The clock was ticking for my drafts.

Here's what I would get when I searched in Yahoo Mail:

It wouldn't find anything with my name or terms like "fantasy football." I dutifully went to the Yahoo help section and found similar issues here, here and here. None of those suggestions worked, but the problem I encountered had been seen by a few other users.

With that in mind I emailed the Yahoo public relations contacts handling the news that the company was dressing up tools like Yahoo Mail and Messenger. I said it's great you guys are advancing your products, but I just want my Yahoo Mail search to work.

From there, my problem was escalated to a concierge, who had a ridiculously soothing voice. She could have been meditating (Microsoft Word suggested 'medicating' and that could have worked too). She said the help ticket has been passed along and she would relay what the fix was.

A few hours later, I was told:

  • The Mail Search fix can only be handled internally by Yahoo techies;
  • Yahoo migrated my mailbox to another server;
  • And my inbox was rebuilt.

The only reason I got this response is that I had a contact with Yahoo before---and a small megaphone via this blog. My next question: What happens to those poor folks on the help message boards that can't use search?

The response was that Yahoo will escalate those problems to be fixed. I encouraged my concierge to troll any help query that includes "Mail search not working" and elevate those problems. What's unclear is how prevalent the curious Yahoo Mail bug is. Should you have the similar issue with Yahoo Mail drop me an email and I'll try and hook you up with the extremely helpful customer care department.  Hopefully, Yahoo will kill the bum server and you'll get your search back.

Topics: Browser, Collaboration, Social Enterprise

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  • Switch to Google

    It's the only way Yahoo will respond appropriately.
    • And vice versa?

      All e-mail providers are subject to bugs and glitches. So, what should one do when a serious bug happens in Gmail too? (Or a security breech, like some that have happened in the past?) What about all the hassle of having people unable to reach you in the address they have?

      Definitely, not a practical or effective solution for everyone.
    • Google has better search

      and better spyware. Depends which you prefer, finding your mail, or knowing that Google has a better record of all your mails and uses it to try and sell you more.
  • Searching email?

    Searching email?

    Well, I guess you ZDNet guys get enough volume of it.

    Personally, I don't get that amount volume.

    YHOO E-MAIL SEARCH HAS BEEN SCREWED UP FOR MONTHS causing much consternation in a YHOO (motorcycle) GROUP that I depend on. YHOO even sent out a query asking for feedback (I reviewed it about ten days ago) indicating that YHOO was well aware of the issue. (It has not been possible to do a search of the e-mail archives of THE GROUP to research a particular issue.) But my corrective actions have served me well: I move the important e-mails into my YHOO DRAFTS folder and re-name the subject line so that I can find the important e-mails by subject line. In addition I continue to use GMAIL for 99% of my e-mails since GMAIL and its many functionalities - including SEARCH - continue to work without fail.

    Imagine that !
  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

    to heck with google

    had my MSN/HOTMAIL account for well over 11 years with no trouble @ all

    and it never ceases to amaze me @ how many times of various forums ... thar always seems to be ethier a complaint about certain yahoo and or gmail hozers having problems

    hearse trax
  • Email becomes useless without a functional search???

    OMG! My FREE e-mail account is TOTALLY unusable because I can't search it! Puleeze.
  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

    I've had my Yahoo account since the mid '90s. I have about 50,000 emails in it currently. Never once had a problem with the email stuff...I've had issues with them sending some emails to another address (filter problem) but emails? Nope...Yahoo has been the most reliable (other than my own mailserver) mail portal I've ever used!
  • Similar problem happening in Yahoo Groups

    I pull all my e-mail by POP3, so when I need a search my e-mail client does it, but I had a similar problem with a Yahoo group I belong to and for which I don't get messages by e-mail because of its very high volume. The search would return nothing for a keyword I knew was in a fairly recent message.

    Unfortunately, in addition to the high volume, people there have that bad habit of reusing subject lines long after the real subject has shifted to something else, so a manual search was very laborious, but that was what I had to do.

    Having found the message, and needing to search that group being an uncommon occurrence, I didn't open a help ticket, but I did find it ironic to happen in a service provided by a company that started and still has its mainstay in search and related technology...
  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

    Yes, I found this issue too. I was looking at an old email, copied [a bit of text] from it, pasted that text into the search field, clicked the search button and viola...

    Sorry. We didn't find any results matching the following criteria:

    * containing the search term: [a bit of text]

    How unsatisfactory is that?

    John L.
  • RTL

    They also don't support RTL languages :-(
  • Search Index Lost My Old Emails

    I've used Yahoo email for quite a long time. One day, searches stopped working. It seemed like the whole search index had been dropped. After that, the index started building back up again, but only with the newer emails. It continued working for a while with newer stuff being indexed and then at some point the older stuff gets dropped out. Once lost the older emails never get reindexed.

    Unfortunately it's pretty unreliable as an archive/record of stuff you want to remember/keep track of. I find that I want and need to go back through old stuff from time to time for various reasons. I can get to old stuff, but I have to do a manual search through individual folders.

  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

    Been experiencing the same issue where Yahoo search is not working for me when I KNOW the content is in there. Trying to plan a wedding without email search functionality is NOT fun or efficient. Any help you can offer with a "help hook up" to that new server would be greatly appreciated!!!
    • Yahoo Mail Search does not work

      My yahoo mail search function suddenly quit working today on my desk top. It never worked on my laptop, but I did not sweat it, since it was at least working on one of my computers, but now I am basically screwed. My email is useless if I can't find old emails, particularly since I am an insurance agent who strongly relies on finding old email communication utilizing the yahoo mail search function. Can anyone give me a contact name or number to call at the proper yahoo department handling these issues? Thanks!
  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

    I have had similar with Search Mail problems for two weeks and Yahoo has been absolutely no help. Search Mail works on three out of the four email accounts I have. Unfortunately it does not work on my main account.

    I've also experienced a dramatic slowing of performace since Yahoo's introduction of a new classic mail interface.

    Given Yahoo's utter incompetence and ability to resolve the Search Mail problems, I will switch to Gmail or a POP3 account and never trust Yahoo to offer consistent, reliable service again.
  • Yahoo Mail Search is DEAD

    Yahoo is dying. We see it everyday. I can not search any email and they shut off Tech Support. I pay $19.95 a year for a PRO account and they now tell me to screw off.

    Good Bye Yahoo. I hope every employee is layed off and eat dirt in the streets.

  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

    Yahoo doesn't care, as long as you keep looking at
    their ads (which always seem to work...) The words
    "Yahoo" and "Support" never go together well, I'm
    migrating all my emails to Gmail, which at least is
    reliable, after using Yahoo for over 10 years. Whoever
    the genius was who decided to fix it 'til it's broken
    deserves a medal. And by medal, I mean a solid kick in
    the pants.

    I use yahoo classic, after trying to use the appalling
    "new & improved" version... one is less a joke than
    the other, but not by much...
  • Yahoo Mail Search Not working

  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto


    Thanks for your zdnet article on this issue dated AUg21, 2009.

    I have been without YAHOO mail search capabilities for 4+ months now. IT is unfortunate as I need this functionality for my job searches of previous contacts. The harm this is doing is significant.

    I have messaged YAHOO tech at least 10 times over the past month and bascially they ar enot answering. It is surprising how unethical this is and that yahoo has not made a general statement on their website or thru an email. I thought I was the only one with this issue, but now I realize many others still have this problem.

    I also thought it could be a YAHOO ploy to get you to upgrade and hence rake in $20 per client frustrated at waiting and getting no reponses to their messages.

    SEEMS very suspicious and UNETHICAL to the max. Tempted to use a free POP3 program out there and download all my yahoo mails onto my machine and NEVER USE YAHOO again.

    Frustrated for 4+ months now!

  • RE: An odd Yahoo Mail search bug that requires escalation pronto

    Yahoo search being down for so long is ridiculous; it is intolerable. Add my protest here. Maybe you could collect these replies and send them en mass to Yahoo.