There is a certain nostalgic feeling that early web developers will have when they hear that Yahoo! is shutting down GeoCities.
Back in the 90’s, GeoCities had certain communities (neighborhoods) that people could join. Some of the most popular neighborhoods were WallStreet, SoHo, Hollywood, Heartland, and Tokyo. If you weren’t on GeoCities back then you were a nobody. Dare I even compare it to the Facebook of its generation back then. GeoCities had a way for beginning web developers to create their own websites. It was one of the Internet’s first breakthrough websites.
GeoCities was initially a web hosting company when it was founded by David Bohnett and John Rezner around 1994. The company was called Beverly Hills Internet before switching in 1995. Around June 1997, GeoCities became the fifth most popular website on the Internet
After growing at a rapid pace despite placing advertisements around the website, the company went public on the NASDAQ under the symbol GCTY. The IPO price was $17 and it rose to a peak of $100 per share. Yahoo! bought the company in January 1999 for $3.57 billion.
Between the time that Yahoo! acquired the company and today, web hosting and template designs have become increasingly competitive at a rapid pace. This is why it is time go for GeoCities. It will be missed as much as we miss the Netscape browser and AOL CDs arriving in our mailbox. The service will be shutting down later this year. Goodbye GeoCities, we had a good run eh?
I put up a timeline above of how GeoCities looked every year and what the services offered were. Click on the image for the bigger version.