Yahoo Finally Decides to Discontinue Service in China

Yahoo technology company announced that it had discontinued access to its services in China. They were forced to do this due to the increasingly challenging business and legal environment in China.

The company stopped providing content to users in mainland China on Monday (1/11), according to a statement published on its website. Chinese local media reported Yahoo’s move on Tuesday (2/11).

“In recognition of the increasingly challenging business and legal environment in China, Yahoo’s suite of services will no longer be accessible from mainland China as of November 1. Yahoo remains committed to the rights of our users and a free and open internet. We thank our users for their support,” a Yahoo spokesperson told Reuters on Wednesday (11/3/2021).

Yahoo’s move follows Microsoft’s earlier steps to discontinue LinkedIn’s services in China last month. LinkedIn also argues that China’s operating environment and compliance requirements are more challenging.

Yahoo has been reducing its services in China gradually over the past few years. Prior to Monday, the company was still operating a weather app and several pages featuring news articles in foreign languages.

Yahoo’s business entered China in 1998. In 2012, Yahoo reached an agreement with Alibaba to sell its stake in the e-commerce giant. The deal gives Alibaba the right to operate Yahoo China under the Yahoo brand for up to four years.

Yahoo China later closed its e-mail service and web portal but the brand retained its global research and development centre in Beijing until 2015.
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Yahoo’s departure from the country comes as Beijing imposes new restrictions on internet companies in areas from content to customer privacy and new laws. On Monday (1/11), a new Personal Information Protection law designed to protect online user data privacy came into effect in China.
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