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Yahoo Mail users diss the new Gmail-like look

The leaner layout of Yahoo Mail isn't especially popular with users, many of whom want the old features and style back.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
2 min read
Yahoo Mail's new look.
Yahoo Mail's new look. Yahoo

Yahoo Mail's latest revamp isn't scoring a lot of points with users.

To celebrate Yahoo Mail's 16th birthday last week, Yahoo overhauled the interface of its e-mail service, offering a leaner look reminiscent of Gmail. But the new style and missing features have triggered a slew of angry comments on the Yahoo Mail blog and even a Change.org petition asking Yahoo to revert back to the old layout.

Tops on the hit list is Yahoo's decision to remove tabs, which allowed people to switch among different views. Users also want the ability to "sort by sender," see their folders without an extra click, and better manage the new Conversations view. Others have criticized the loss of the toolbar, the look of the new themes, and the challenges of performing certain tasks, such as attaching a file.

One person specifically blasted Yahoo Mail for attempting to mimic Gmail:

I've used Yahoo mail for many years and was always very happy with it until the last two disastrous updates. The latest update is the worst. Yahoo has turned itself into a poor imitation of Gmail. The whole reason that I stuck with Yahoo mail is because it ISN'T Gmail which I hate! Now Yahoo has lost its whole raison d'etre as an alternative more user friendly email. If Yahoo doesn't allow its customers to revert back to the classic version then I might as well migrate to Gmail as it's now virtually the same thing!

Even further, the new Yahoo Mail is buggy, according to several users. Some say they have to log in again after getting a blank screen. Others say they're unable to either receive or open e-mails.

The Change.org petition, which has received more than 2,800 supporters since launching last week, cites a few more complaints:

Many of us have used yahoo mail for over a decade. It's been reliable, functional and served the needs of a wide variety of people -- for personal and business use. Yahoo has changed it, taking away the ability to organize emails, switch from writing to reading emails without losing work, incorporating ads into the inbox (that, if clicked on by mistake, lead to spam websites) and hiding essential functions, like printing.

Yahoo has responded to some of the grievances with specific workarounds, but its overall response has been general:

The recent design changes in Yahoo Mail are important steps to building a more modern and personalized version. We recognize that this is a lot of change and are actively listening to user feedback so we can continuously make improvements.

(Via CNET Australia)