Internet Retirement: Your Days Are Numbered

Posted by Viktoria Michaelis on November 28, 2014 in Internet |

Retirement is something many people simply do not look forward to: what will they do with all their free time? So much leisure all of a sudden, and no plans whatsoever. Either that, or they look forward to it more than anything else, have already made copious plans, and can’t wait to get out and about in the world and see what’s what. There are, however, other forms of retirement, the ones which are forced through in one way or another, no matter whether the retirement is desired or earned. Amazon is pushing one such ‘retirement’ this coming month: the Alexa Toolbar ‘What’s Hot’ feature will be retired during December.

For most people this is really a nothing piece of news. A small part of a single toolbar is going to disappear: who cares?

Alexa Toolbar for Firefox

Screenshot Source: Alexa

The ‘What’s Hot’ section of the Alexa Toolbar shows those web sites which have a large number of visitors and might be of interest to others: rising news stories, videos, shopping opportunities. It is regulated by the people who already have a the toolbar installed on their computer, and shows what other toolbar users are looking at. From this point of view, it is a useless addition to any browser; it is not representative; it is easily manipulated; the usual suspects – eBay, Amazon, Yahoo – are always there simply because of their high visit rate.

What about the rest of the toolbar? If the ‘What’s Hot’ feature disappears, is there anything left of interest? To be honest: no. The only reason I have had this toolbar on my browser is to show me what other people are looking at. Everything else, right down to the Alexa ranking, is available on other toolbars and, in many cases, in a far better manner.

So there will be a double retirement during December. Amazon / Alexa retire their ‘What’s Hot’ feature, and I retire them. No point in having an old toolbar which doesn’t fulfill any useful function. At least we won’t have to pay a pension.

Love & Kisses, Viki.

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