Life at Yahoo

This is what it's like to work at Yahoo.
18 posts for Working at Yahoo!
sandy gould

Know Your Superpower? 5 Steps To Reaching Your Creative Destiny

Posted: 9th of October, 2013
Our own Sandy Gould, SVP of Talent Acquisition and Development, talks with Fast Company about the five simple steps that help clear a path for career growth. Read the full article here:

There will always be mystery in the future, but knowing your talent will help you make it through. And thrive.

When I was 12 years old, I saw Star Wars in the theater at least six times. When I got home from the sixth screening, I ran straight to my mother and said, “Mom, Luke Skywalker knows his destiny and I know mine. My destiny is to help people achieve their creative destiny.” I’ve been lucky to be able to do so ever since. At Yahoo, I spend my days building and empowering our transformative talent, and hopefully I can help you grow your career too.

I think one of the most daunting and compelling things about life is the mystery of the unknown. It’s hard to see the plan for growth when you’re so focused on the day-to-day. The future becomes a far off idea that you can’t quite imagine, let alone figure out how to build.

When I'm speaking with Yahoo employees, I advise them on five simple steps that help clear a path for career growth. These tips help you focus on the big picture, which helps the business succeed, and ultimately helps you succeed. As a self-proclaimed comic book junkie, I’ve appropriately dubbed them . . .

THE SUPERPOWER STEPS TO CAREER GROWTH

1. Know your superpowers.

What are you good at? Chances are you have felt an interest in your superpower all your life. Think about what you love and what you excel at. Think back to your childhood, passions, hobbies, and interests. When you feel “in your zone” and time passes quickly, what are you doing? Capitalize on that. And as Batman taught us, anyone can be a hero--no matter how “super” your powers are.

2. Know who you’re working for and who you want to work for.

Gain an understanding for how the decision makers on your team think. What are they looking for? Why did they hire you? What skills do you need to impress them to get to the next level?

3. Understand their needs and the company’s needs (this is key!).
Depending on the level of transparency in your company, this can be really easy or really difficult, but it is crucial. In order to excel, you must learn the goals of the company, your department and your manager. You can then shape your individual goals around them (and use your superpowers to achieve them).

4. Deliver.
Deliver on the business goals you’ve outlined. By your review, you will have succeeded in meeting the high-level business needs of the company.

5. Take risks to stretch, grow, and learn.

This is just physics. You must be operating above your level in order to be considered for the next one. So don’t be afraid to take on a challenge.

There will always be mystery in the future, and as you work on your career superpowers--both identifying and learning how to use them--you can never know definitively where they will lead you. And you don’t need to. Einstein said that 52% of all great creativity is accidental, so be ready to grab opportunity and own your career development.

Whether your career is just beginning or you’re well into your journey, I hope these tips will help you take ownership, grow, and ultimately lead you to reaching your creative destiny--whatever that may be.

Remember, Bruce Wayne as Batman can't fly, he doesn't transform himself when he's angry. He just fights bad guys. And does a really good job.

--Sandy Gould is the senior vice president of global talent acquisition and development at Yahoo. Previously, he lead recruitment for the Disney/ABC Television Group, where he was responsible for talent acquisition and talent development initiatives.
vimeo video

Yahoo! employees help make music students’ dream come true

Posted: 7th of June, 2013

The Yahoo! Employee Foundation (YEF) is a grassroots, philanthropic organization that brings together the talents, time, and financial resources of Yahoo employees to serve the needs of communities around the globe.  Yahoos can not only volunteer their time, but they can work with YEF to champion grants for causes they are passionate about.  

Jill Sewill, a Sunnyvale-based Yahoo, wanted to help 200 music students achieve their dream of seeing a live symphony, so YEF - thanks to donations from Yahoos all over the world - made it happen!  

Check out this wonderful Thank You Video from the Washington Manor Middle School Music Boosters, who received a YEF grant to take a field trip to see the San Francisco Symphony.The kids had a great time, and it’s amazing to see the impact that grants can have when they are targeted through engaged Yahoo Employee Champions!

Yahoo!'s Expansion Plans in Dublin

Posted: 4th of April, 2013

We are thrilled to announce our expansion plans to the Dublin Operations Center! We will be adding more than 200 new employees in the next 12 months and have already started recruiting for roles in, Ad technology, Operations, Customer support, Human Resources and Finance. This expansion will support our business across Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) regions.

 

We opened the Dublin office back in 2003. For the past decade, what started as a small team has grown into a multilingual and multicultural workforce. Dublin has been a great home for Yahoo!, with its talented international workforce, strong business environment and sophisticated technology infrastructure.

 

“At Yahoo!, we’re all about making people’s daily habits inspiring and entertaining, and our team in Dublin helps make this happen everyday.  It’s the face of Yahoo for millions of users and advertisers throughout EMEA,” said Christophe Parcot, VP and head of EMEA. “We’re keenly focused on recruiting and developing the best talent in the industry, and there is significant opportunity at Yahoo for the right individuals who want to grow their careers with a global digital brand.”

 

An Taoiseach, Mr. Enda Kenny, recently visited our headquarters in Sunnyvale, California as part of his St. Patrick’s Day United States trip. He met with our CEO Marissa Mayer, COO Henrique de Castro and CFO Ken Goldman along with representatives of the Irish Industrial Development Agency (IDA).


"I'm delighted to welcome the further expansion of Yahoo! in Dublin with 200 new jobs. Ireland is becoming the internet capital of Europe with companies like Yahoo offering great opportunities to our passionate, highly-skilled work force,” said An Taoiseach, Mr. Enda Kenny T.D. “The Government, through its Action Plan for Jobs, will continue to make the changes to ensure Ireland remains competitive and a natural home for digital companies. Yahoo!'s growing footprint in Ireland is a welcome statement of its commitment to this country."

 

Come and join our amazing team! Please check out job opportunities here.

https://c-1a50fb6ca70d84257fac9ewdjyxjlzxi.http.atlas.cdn.yimg.com/ygcvideos/out2/1364334327_21xppO4kxwgq1_1_0.mp4?m=video%2fmp4&s=178a0c99d980574c3ef77ef5234cffd6&a=ygcvideos

Life at Yahoo! Dublin

Posted: 26th of March, 2013

We are so excited to announce the expansion of our Dublin, Ireland Operations Centre. We have already started recruiting for 200 open roles in ad technology, operations, customer support, HR and finance. Come join the amazing team! Please check out job opportunities at http://bit.ly/Dublinjobs

Master Inventors at Yahoo!

Posted: 7th of June, 2013

At Yahoo!, Master Inventor Awards are given to recognize and reward some of the company’s top innovators. The criteria are not just about the number of patents, but also the inventor's contribution to innovation and their capacity and experience in mentorship. We had a chance to interview some of them on their great work and suggestions to junior inventors.


Why is Yahoo a good place for developers and inventors?
Peter Mika: Yahoo! is a great place for inventors of all kinds. Yahoo! Labs in particular is unique in the industry in that it's renown both for scientific excellence externally and for having a huge impact on Yahoo!'s businesses.

Tarun Bhatia: It’s a great place for developers and engineers. There’s much room for creative solutions. We have many interesting problems with the potential of meaningful impact, large amounts of data, adequate resources, and a unique and fun culture. I love how many disciplines we embrace to solve our business challenges – economics, social sciences, artificial intelligence, distributed computing, etc. Each day is like being back in school, only better.

What are you working on now?
Tarun Bhatia: Right now, I’m trying to see if we can real-time assess how we affect a user with each interaction in a session. This has significant marketplace implications. Imagine how effectively we could delight our users and advertisers if every serve-time decision is consciously informed by this assessment.

What advice do you have for more junior inventors?
Ron Jacoby: Find something you are passionate about.  Work to really understand the current state of technology and business of that market. Find the opportunities that exist. Develop your ideas and plan. And never take No as a final answer; use it as feedback to further develop your ideas and pitch.

Tarun Bhatia: Best advice I received was - write it down. Apart from that, encourage yourself to cover a problem outside your area of focus with a fresh perspective. Think of where else your solutions may apply. Do this often.

Ricardo Baeza -Yates:
Do not plan your life. Just do your best and unthinkable opportunities will cross your life path.

Yoelle Maarek
: Think simple, think user. Don't think like an engineer or scientist – think about your mom, your kids, would they understand the value of your invention, would they want to use it.

Founder of Yahoo! Spain invited to meet Spanish Princess

Posted: 20th of December, 2012

Our very own Noelia Fernandez, EMEA’s vice president of Media Network, was born 40 years ago in Santander, Spain. Since then, she’s founded Yahoo Spain, become the Director of Products & Services, moved to the European headquarters to become the Head of Audience for the EMEA region, and now leads the Media Network Group for EMEA.

 

40 years ago, another amazing woman was born: Spanish Princess Letizia Ortiz Rocasolano. In honor of the Princess’ 40th birthday, Tiempo magazine gathered 12 outstanding women to help her celebrate. Noelia was on the guest list. It was an informal meeting where they shared personal stories of their achievements, and chatted about issues, including the current financial situation in Spain, and the evolving roles of women in the workplace.

 

Along with Noelia, the list included: Inma Shara, orchestra conductor; Laia Marull, actress; Eugenia Rico, writer; Concha Buika, singer; Conchita Martínez, tennis player; Carmen Belén Molina Caballero, Chemical Engineer professor; Montserrat Martí Caballé, soprano; Gema Gallardo, NGO President; Teresa San Jurjo, Foundation Director; the senator María Elena Diego Castellanos (PSOE); and Juliana Fernández Cueva Lominchar (PP, the party in the Spanish Government).


The 12 women were chosen for their amazing accomplishments, each innovators and leaders in their fields. These remarkable women were all in their forties and are winning leaders in their own areas, including literature, music, cinema, sports, politics, culture and the Internet. As a group, they felt that being in their forties is a great age for them, and for women in general, as it’s usually a time when there’s clarity around the paths that they’ve chosen. "I was so proud to represent in that meeting women in technology and business in front of the Princess and that amazing group and explain how what me and many Yahoos everyday that impact lives of many Spanish and citizens around the World,” said Noelia. “Yahoo! is the best place in the world to do that if you have a passion for technology and for content. They all smiled and one told me, Concha Buika, that she comes everyday to our frontpage because she loves our stories."

Back at Yahoo!, Noelia’s team spreads over the UK, Italy and Egypt, impacting our users every single day. Quoted as a leader who has “purple in her veins,” we’re proud to call Noelia a Yahoo!

Marissa Mayer

Yahoo! Appoints Marissa Mayer Chief Executive Officer

Posted: 16th of August, 2012

SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- Yahoo! (NASDAQ:YHOO) today announced that it has appointed Marissa Mayer as President and Chief Executive Officer and Member of the Board of Directors effective July 17, 2012. The appointment of Ms. Mayer, a leading consumer internet executive, signals a renewed focus on product innovation to drive user experience and advertising revenue for one of the world's largest consumer internet brands, whose leading properties include Yahoo Finance, Yahoo! Sports, Yahoo Mobile, Yahoo Mail, and Yahoo Search.

 

Mayer said, "I am honored and delighted to lead Yahoo!, one of the internet's premier destinations for more than 700 million users. I look forward to working with the Company's dedicated employees to bring innovative products, content, and personalized experiences to users and advertisers all around the world."

 

Most recently, Mayer was responsible for Local, Maps, and Location Services for Google, the company's suite of local and geographical products including Google Maps, Google Earth, Zagat, Street View, and local search, for desktop and mobile. Mayer joined Google in 1999 as its 20th employee and led efforts for many of Google's most recognizable products, including the development of its flagship search product and iconic homepage for over 10 years. Mayer managed some of Google's most successful innovations, launching more than 100 features and products including image, book and product search, toolbar, iGoogle, Google News, and Gmail — creating much of the "look and feel" of the Google user experience.

 

Yahoo! Co-Founder David Filo said, "Marissa is a well-known, visionary leader in user experience and product design and one of Silicon Valley's most exciting strategists in technology development. I look forward to working with her to enhance Yahoo's product offerings for our over 700 million unique monthly visitors."

 

"The Board of Directors unanimously agreed that Marissa's unparalleled track record in technology, design, and product execution makes her the right leader for Yahoo! at this time of enormous opportunity," said Fred Amoroso, Chairman of the Board of Directors.

 

Mayer received her B.S. in Symbolic Systems and her M.S. in Computer Science from Stanford University, specializing in artificial intelligence for both degrees. She is credited as an inventor on several patents in artificial intelligence and interface design.

 

"Yahoo!'s products will continue to enhance our partnerships with advertisers, technology and media companies, while inspiring and delighting our users. There is a lot to do and I can't wait to get started," Mayer said.

 

About Yahoo!

 

Yahoo! is a technology-powered media company, creating deeply personal digital experiences that keep more than half a billion people connected to what matters most to them, across devices and around the globe. Yahoo!'s unique combination of Science + Art + Scale connects advertisers to the consumers who build their businesses. Yahoo is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. For more information, visit the pressroom (pressroom.yahoo.net) or the company's blog, Yodel Anecdotal (yodel.yahoo.com).

 

Marissa Mayer Biographical Information

 

Marissa Mayer was most recently Vice President of Local, Maps, and Location Services at Google where she oversaw product management, engineering, design and strategy for the company's suite of local and geographical products, including Google Maps, Google Earth, Zagat, Street View, and local search, for desktop and mobile. She also curated the Google Doodle program, celebrating special events on Google's homepage around the world.

 

During her 13 years at Google, Marissa held numerous positions, including engineer, designer, product manager, and executive, and launched more than 100 well-known features and products. She played an instrumental role in Google search, leading the product management effort for more than 10 years, a period during which Google Search grew from a few hundred thousand to well over a billion searches per day. Marissa led the development of some of Google's most successful services including image, book and product search, toolbar, and iGoogle, and defined such pivotal products as Google News and Gmail. She is listed as an inventor on several patents in artificial intelligence and interface design.

 

Joining as the company's first female engineer in 1999, Marissa played an important role in developing Google's culture. Her contributions included overseeing the look-and-feel of the company's iconic homepage and founding the Associate Product Manager program, which has hired over 300 of the company's future leaders and is considered the industry's ideal standard in transforming new computer science graduates into executive leaders.

 

Prior to joining Google, Marissa worked at the UBS research lab in Zurich, Switzerland and at SRI International in Menlo Park, California. She graduated with honors from Stanford University with a B.S. in Symbolic Systems and a M.S. in Computer Science. For both degrees, she specialized in artificial intelligence. While at Stanford, she taught computer programming to more than 3000 students and received the Centennial Teaching and Forsythe Awards for her contributions to undergraduate education. In 2008, the Illinois Institute of Technology awarded her an honorary doctorate of engineering.

 

She has been honored with the Matrix Award by the New York Women in Communications, as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, and as "Woman of the Year" by Glamour magazine. For four years running, Fortune has named her one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business, including when at age 33 she was the youngest woman ever included on the list.

 

Marissa serves on the board of directors of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. She is also on the board of various non-profits, including the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Ballet, and the New York City Ballet.

 

Yahoo! is the trademark and/or registered trademark of Yahoo Inc. All other names are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

 

 

 

 

Yahoo!

Dana Lengkeek, 415-994-4008

danal@yahoo-inc.com

 

 

 

Source: Yahoo!
http://pressroom.yahoo.net/pr/ycorp/236553.aspx

 

 

 


Microsoft and Yahoo search alliance launches in the UK

Posted: 5th of March, 2012


Microsoft and Yahoo search alliance launches in the UK
(Extracted from New Media Age, February 22, 2012)

Yahoo search marketing accounts and search traffic will start to be migrated into the Microsoft Advertising adCenter from today, part of the long-awaited Microsoft/Yahoo search alliance.

The migration, due for completion at the end of April, will result in UK search advertisers being able to buy from a combined Yahoo and Bing audience through a single ad platform, Microsoft’s adCenter.

The alliance is already live in the US, Canada and India but the companies have finished the transaction of all searches globally, meaning that all search coming via Yahoo, including mobile, is powered by Bing.

Cedric Chambaz, Microsoft marketing manager, UK, said, “Starting around 19 March, we expect to progressively start serving adCenter ads to Yahoo searchers. The entire Yahoo paid search volume is expected to be transitioned to adCenter within approximately two weeks from that date.”

Yahoo search marketing accounts and search traffic will start to be migrated into the Microsoft Advertising adCenter from today, part of the long-awaited Microsoft/Yahoo search alliance.

The migration, due for completion at the end of April, will result in UK search advertisers being able to buy from a combined Yahoo and Bing audience through a single ad platform, Microsoft’s adCenter.

The alliance is already live in the US, Canada and India but the companies have finished the transaction of all searches globally, meaning that all search coming via Yahoo, including mobile, is powered by Bing.

Cedric Chambaz, Microsoft marketing manager, UK, said, “Starting around 19 March, we expect to progressively start serving adCenter ads to Yahoo searchers. The entire Yahoo paid search volume is expected to be transitioned to adCenter within approximately two weeks from that date.”

Yahoo! Egypt Team

In My Own Words: YEF Egypt is Crossing Boundaries to Do Good

Posted: 7th of June, 2013
Just over a year has passed since Yahoo established its full-fledged office in Cairo, Egypt. That’s not much time, but given the eventful recent months in the country, Egypt’s Yahoos have grown closer to each other, the company, and what it stands for, and one of the things that has truly contributed to this bond is the Yahoo Employee Foundation (YEF), which helps employees make a bigger difference for the causes they care about.
My name is Mohamed Sabe and I am the Arabic Editor in Chief for Yahoo Middle East. I was chosen to be the representative for YEF in Egypt in January 2011, only two months after joining the company.Despite starting the year with less than forty employees in the Cairo office, new Yahoos were determined to do good as soon as they found out that Yahoo encourages its people to make positive contributions to their community.
However, YEF initiatives had to be halted due to the Egyptian revolution, and the office had to be shut down for several weeks for security reasons. In spite of this setback, as soon as things were back to normal, we were again focused on planning for our first initiative and working with local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to decide on what would be the best way to contribute to development in Egypt. Little did we know that our first initiative would cross boundaries and reach beyond Egypt.
In mid-July 2011, a severe drought hit the entire ‘Horn of Africa’ region on the Eastern side of the continent, resulting to this day in over 29,000 deaths among children under 5 in Somalia.
Given the magnitude of this tragedy, local initiatives took a back seat and YEF Egypt members decided that contributing to the well being of Somali families was crucial, and in mid August we approached the Union of Arab Doctors who were collecting money to buy food supplies and send them to Somalia.
Four hundred Egyptian Pounds (67 US dollars) was all that was needed to support a Somali family for a month, so we started a collection campaign that lasted for two weeks.
Around thirty Yahoo employees (out of sixty in the Cairo office) contributed their money to this cause and we ended up collecting 6,550 Egyptian Pounds (around 1,100 US dollars). While the amount may not seem like much, it meant that we ended up helping over 16 Somali families overcome this crisis for a month.
I remember walking through our small office in Cairo collecting donations and seeing the spirit that Yahoo!’s employees in Cairo displayed in competing with each other to give more money and encouraging each other to contribute. It was really breathtaking!
I personally believe that the beautiful and collective spirit of this small startup office had a strong impact on us. This great start for YEF initiatives in Egypt only increased the appetite of Yahoo’s employees to contribute more and encouraged new Yahoos to take part in upcoming projects.
YEF Egypt will next be teaming up with local NGOs who work on supporting orphans and developing education.
From where I stand, I can proudly say that the culture of doing good and contributing positively to the community is alive and growing in Cairo’s Yahoo office.
To learn more about YEF or find out how you can make a difference, check out http://howgoodgrows.yahoo.com/.
Best Regards,Mohamed SabeArabic Editor-in-Chief Yahoo Middle East
Erin McPherson

In My Own Words - The Power of Yahoo!’s Original Programming

Posted: 27th of October, 2011
When people ask me how I’m doing at Yahoo lately, I tell them I think I have the best role at the company, and I’m not just being politically correct. As the head of video, I‘ve inherited an amazing existing business and an incredible team of professionals—so part of my job is just spreading the word about what we already do so well. The other part of my job is to take this existing success and build on it—and luckily, my team and I have the support of the entire organization as we attempt to make a bigger, bolder mark in the online video space. I am tired of hearing only Netflix, YouTube and Hulu named as the big movers in online video. We deserve to be among those ranks and I won’t rest until we are.

Today, the video market is crowded, chaotic and moves at a frenetic pace. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. With our scale, leading media properties and premium advertising business, Yahoo!, by all accounts, should be a leader in premium online video. After all, Yahoo has been showing consumers what is interesting, important and entertaining online as long as any player out there. Leading in consumer media experiences is in our DNA and is our birthright.
So about that existing success: Today, Yahoo produces and/or distributes up to 26 original video series on our network and reaches nearly 27 million people a month.* Yahoo has ALL 10 out of the top 10 original programs on the web.* Yahoo original programs are more visited than all of hulu.com. And recently, Yahoo Studios received an Emmy nomination, an Edward R. Murrow award and a Webby Award for its original program “Second Act,” sponsored by General Mills.
And now, about the future: We are taking our success in original video and building on it, adding unique voices, known personalities and experiences you will only be able to get on Yahoo A preview of what’s to come:
Female-Centric Programming Slate: The television networks were not alone in announcing their fall programming line-ups this year. Yahoo!, the premier digital media company, will be launching its own first full slate of original, premium, TV-quality web shows. Each of the eight new original shows is designed to reach a predominantly female audience and will cover a variety of lifestyle topics, such as healthy living, relationships, celebrity, entertainment, and more. The programs are being produced both by our award-winning in-house Yahoo Studios team and by leading industry partners, including Ben Silverman’s Electus, Fishbowl Media, and Morgan Spurlock. What makes these shows especially exciting is that Yahoo is financing production and will program and promote the shows as never before. With a creative canvas that enables advertisers to reach and immerse digital video audiences with relevant messages and out-of-the-box ad formats, marketers can now participate in “share of voice” buying along with audience-focused programming. This offering complements our existing offerings in video, which include award-winning branded entertainment programs as well as inventory targeting a specific audience in an unparalleled way.
A Decade of Difference: The Concert for the 10th Anniversary of the William J. Clinton Foundation: On October 15, 2011, Yahoo will be the only place to watch the live concert event of the year: A Decade of Difference, The Clinton Foundation 10th Anniversary Concert event, featuring the biggest musical acts in the world, including Lady Gaga, Bono, the Edge and Usher. Yahoo is bringing this event to a global audience in partnership with Control Room, the producers of other world-class events like LiveAid. This is sure to be an unforgettable experience and Yahoo is the place to bring it to life for a global audience.
Original Voices Only on Yahoo!: We are continuing to expand our content offerings by working with unique global voices and world-wide partners to bring the best premium content and original programming to Yahoo We have some exciting upcoming projects featuring top Hollywood talent and unique storytelling we will unveil in the near future!
We will succeed, but as importantly, we will fail. The web is about experimentation, and fun. We don’t need to be anyone else—Netflix, Hulu, YouTube—there is room for all of us; we can and should be a place for premium contextualized content and video.
Erin McPhersonVP & Head of Video * Source: comScore Media Builder Custom Report, US, August 2011, among a set including more than 75 original video programs, as custom-defined by Yahoo!, on the following properties: Yahoo!, YouTube, Hulu, MSN, AOL, Forbes, PopSugar, IGN, TMZ, New York Times, Smosh.com, ABC News, Sugar, Funny or Die, She Knows, CraveOnline.

Editor’s Note: This article is part of a series entitled, “In My Own Words,” that will give Yahoo employees the opportunity to share their own stories about Yahoo!.

In My Own Words - "Amazingly Ordinary" - What does that mean?

Posted: 24th of October, 2011
What does "amazingly ordinary" mean? Yahoo Alan Brightman explains the idea behind Independence-2011.

In this article, we meet Alan Brightman. As a leader in the Global Accessibility Team, Alan opens our eyes to what a Yahoo user with disabilities may feel, and how we can all learn about the humanity of accessibility during Yahoo!'s Independence-2011.

Be honest. If you were able to picture our hundreds of millions of users, how often do you think that picture would include individuals with disabilities?
Never? Yes, that’s pretty much the average. And understandably so. After all, most of us have almost no direct experience with disabled people so if we ever do think about kids or adults with disabilities, we usually think about them as being somehow “special” - as being very different from who we usually think of as Yahoo users.

Just Plain Ordinary

Many years ago, a friend of mine told me from his wheelchair that the toughest thing about being disabled is, “I’m never perceived as just plain ordinary. I’m either noticed too much or noticed not at all.” That’s a strange place to be, not being able to simply blend in—to be invisible—whenever you want.

And that is how the idea for Yahoo!’s Independence-2011 came about.

The Humanity of Accessibility

More than a thousand Yahoos have toured our Accessibility Labs in Sunnyvale and Bangalore and, as a result, have learned a lot about the technology of accessibility. What we haven’t been able to teach well enough, though, is the humanity of accessibility or what I think of as the ordinariness of disability. So we’re bringing that amazing ordinariness to the Yahoo campus. We’re giving Yahoos the opportunity to better understand the disabled experience in a comfortable, engaging, and non-threatening setting.

Independence-2011 Activities

There will be a lot going on during Independence-2011. A nationally known chef, who happens to be blind, will display his culinary talents in an activity called “Cooking Without Looking.” An organization known as the AbleGamers Foundation will show how kids and adults with profound disabilities use various assistive technologies to play the same video games on the same consoles as everyone else. The National Center for Accessible Media will be on hand demonstrating a variety of technologies, including one that they invented, which enables people who are deaf to watch captioned versions of first-run movies while sitting right next to someone—in a mainstream movie theater—who isn’t seeing any captions at all.

Other activities and demos will be arrayed across the Yahoo campus, including what many Yahoos see as a rare opportunity to show off their basketball prowess. They’ll be playing in wheelchairs on our courts against a professional wheelchair basketball team from Berkeley.

Las Vegas odds have yet to be posted for the wheelchair basketball competitions, but I think it’s safe to say that the guys in the purple shirts will be humbled. And trounced.

Alan Brightman
VP, Global Accessibility Team
Noelia Fernández Arroyo

In My Own Words: Delivering Compelling Content Across Europe

Posted: 24th of October, 2011
I’m pretty sure you will have heard many times before, but it’s true, in the internet and media world: content is king.

It sounds simple, but what this statement doesn’t do is capture the innovation, the passion and the strives in technology which help Yahoo deliver the most relevant content to 92 million users in Europe alone by a combining unique technology with human expertise.
First off, you may ask who am I? I am Noelia Fernández Arroyo, VP, Head of Audience in EMEA. I’ve been at Yahoo for over 13 years. Jerry and the team initially hired me to launch Yahoo Spain back in 1998. I joined the company because it had the ambition to improve the World through great technology and services, with editorial at the core and you know what, the principle still remains the same today. Yes, I’ve seen changes and have experienced challenges but I firmly believe in Yahoo!’s commitment and passion to create deeply personal experiences on the Web. Yahoo!’s passion, is my passion.
To that point, we have been investing in the right areas and focusing where we can win, and where we are winning! Did you know in Europe’s five largest markets Yahoo reaches 92 million people, up over 7 million or 9% year on year against a market growth of 2% and we’re ranked number one or two in five categories across Europe: News, Finance, Sport, Flickr and Answers. We are in a unique position where we can leverage our innovation and technology with our European users to deliver compelling content to a mass audience, every day.
We have the best technology combined with talented, global editorial teams who help us turn around events and news that people care about on a global basis. Let me give you an example, the London riots were big news here in Europe, as it was globally. We were seeing a lot of activity on the streets, which was both prolific and sensitive in nature. The flexibility of the global publishing platform allowed our News and Front Page teams to respond quickly to create around the clock coverage and exclusive content in real time and through people’s own eyes. Interestingly, in August, the UK video streams rocketed by 191% on Yahoo News showing the demand and consumption of rich content in parallel to news stories.
So, how do we do this?
Firstly, we keep investing strongly in our new global content publishing platform. It’s called the Yahoo Publishing Platform. It’s global but puts power in the hands of local teams here in Europe working for local audiences; it allows us to act much faster to world events and activities and provides a platform for easy integration of rich video content.
So what does the Yahoo Publishing Platform actually mean for the life of our Editors in Europe?
- In Italy, where Yahoo Movies is on the Yahoo Publishing Platform, it took just one hour to create recent coverage of the Cannes Movies Festival which delivered double the performance from the previous year
- We can create and publish original content easily and quickly: in Yahoo omg! alone we publish over 35 original stories per day unique to Yahoo!
- The Yahoo Publishing Platform recently launched for Yahoo Video, Lifestyle and News. A combination of coverage of key events using the new platform led to a 20% increase in Yahoo News page views in Europe[iv]
- omg from Yahoo has also launched in Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK
- Yahoo Movies in Italy launched onto the platform leading to a 60% increase in page views
- So far we have launched 95 products already onto the Yahoo Publishing Platform
Through our science and technology, we can make informed decisions, based on scientific data rather than predictions and estimations. It allows the editors I work with to get ahead of the game and be first with the right content. This is where C.O.R.E. (Content Optimization and Relevance Engine) comes in, a technology that was developed by Yahoo Labs a couple of years ago. Sophisticated algorithms and machine learning technology, combined with human expertise allows us to carry out deep personalization to our 674 million users globally and 92 million in Europe.
Did you know?
- Our Editorial team appropriately delivers on average, 35 stories per week day, per market, targeted to our users individual interests based on our own technology
- Yahoo personalizes 2.2 billion content module experiences on our pages per day
- We show 13 million personalized homepage versions per day and the click through rate in the Yahoo Magazine on the frontpage has increased by more than 700% in Europe as a result of this technology
So you can see why I am committed, focused and excited to be a Yahoo and this is just a taste of what we are currently doing here in Europe. I know we have plenty of innovation and new products up our sleeves over the coming months, so watch this space!
Gracias and keep up the purple!
Noelia Fernandez ArroyoProud to be a Yahoo!

Southern California Hack Day 2011

Posted: 16th of September, 2011


Originally posted on the WIT blog.  By Karen Bruner.

Yahoo! has been hosting company-wide Hackdays two or three times a year now for several years, and while Yahoos in the Southern California offices were welcome to work on hacks, they didn't have the support of an organized local event. That changed for Summer Hackday 2011. The SoCal chapter of Yahoo!'s Women in Tech group, with funding from the Yahoo Developer Network, put together a great environment for local hackers to collaborate and concentrate on their hacks.

Prospective hackers listen to pitches over pizza

A week before Hackday, potential hackers came together to pitch ideas and find interested hackers. Hacking wasn't limited to engineers who fit the traditional definition of computer hacking. The Southern California offices have a large proportion of people in the advertising and business side, but they still have many of the necessary hacking skills: ideas, aesthetic input, and enthusiasm.

By the time Hackday rolled around, 19 hackers worked on several local projects that had come together. Hacks ran the gamut from ideas that could someday appear on the front pages of Yahoo!'s sites to internal tools that would make the behind-the-scenes run better. While most hackers were local to the Burbank office, Yahoos from the Santa Monica office also came to join the hacks. WIT volunteers kept them energized with drinks, munchies, and pizza.


SoCal Summer 2011 Hackers

For another first, the teams in Burbank got to present their hacks in the Friday afternoon demos via teleconferencing with Hackday HQ in Sunnyvale. Several dozen people, hackers and supporters alike, crowded in a boardroom over pizza and beer to watch the local demos. The enthusiasm and excitement from everybody was tremendous. Second-time Burbank hacker Srikanth Bangalore said this was a big improvement over his first Hackday, when he worked from his desk and had to record his demo so it could be replayed in the Sunnyvale demo session. Doing the demo live and having an energetic audience made for a very different experience.


A first: Burbank Hackday demos teleconfereced live with Sunnyvale 

Mariena Quintanilla's hack was related to her day-to-day work, a monitoring tool she had been needing for awhile but hadn't had time to work on. Hackday gave her the perfect chance. She found another would-be hacker to help out, and her tool will have an immediate impact.

With one successful Southern California Hackday under WIT's belt, the plan is to make this a regular event, allowing local Yahoos to tap their hacking talent more easily, which can only benefit Yahoo as a whole.

Accessibility in India!

Posted: 7th of June, 2013
There are 60 million people with disabilities in the U.S. There are more than 10 times that number around the globe. Yahoo!’s Accessibility team wants to make sure that every one of these individuals is able to use Yahoo as their web site of choice. That will only be possible, of course, if every corner of our network is fully accessible.

While we still have work to do toward that end, we did reach a significant milestone when Yahoo India launched an Accessibility Lab in Bangalore. It is modeled after our Sunnyvale lab, which has demonstrated a variety of assistive technologies to hundreds of Yahoos since it launched in 2008.

Our Accessibility Labs are important tools for engineers who can’t imagine life with a disability. The reality is that not everyone can use a mouse, type on a keyboard, or see the computer screen. We simulate that experience so our developers can learn how to think about users with disabilities during their product development process. We have screen readers to help them understand the experience of a blind user, single switches and onscreen keyboards for physically disabled users, communication devices for kids with speech impairments, etc. More and more Yahoo products are being designed and developed in our Bangalore office, so it became clear that we needed to enhance our ability to train engineers and designers there.

Also, as a global company, we are keenly aware that commercial screen readers are generally out of reach for most blind people living in developing countries. So we’ve sponsored the non-profit NV Access Foundation, which is working on a free, open-source screen reader. Our support will help them improve web features for NVDA for Windows, making it easier for visually-impaired users around the world to browse the Web – especially when they encounter Web 2.0 technologies. And by making NVDA’s screen reader a better product, we’re also helping all the web developers who use it as their testing tool.

Everybody wins.

Victor Tsaran
Sr. Accessibility Program Manager
External Source

Meet our Giant Talking Mailbox!

Posted: 7th of September, 2011
Sometimes being friendly pays off! Watch what happens when a purple, talking mailbox shows up on a street corner. The Yahoo Mailbox surprised New Yorkers on a sunny afternoon in Brooklyn and Manhattan and made a bunch of new friends along the way. Thanks to all my NY friends, it was great talking to you and can’t wait to meet the locals in Chicago. Follow me to find out where I’m off to this summer at facebook.com/yahoomail.