It’s the end of an era as Yahoo! has decided to completely shut down Geocities, the free site-hosting service that was one of the go-to places during the late 90s if you didn’t know a whole lot about html or web design but really, really wanted a website. I never used it myself, being an Angelfire user, but so many of my friends both online and in real life utilized Geocities that it’s tied to my youth and my time as a fan of anime and video games.
Geocities is very significant to a number of fandoms out there, and it’s particularly a big deal when it comes to anime. It’s not because any incredible resources existed on Geocities sites (though some may have, I just can’t be bothered to check), but the sheer amount of anime sites that were on Geocities over the years. Don’t believe me? Go to the Anime Web Turnpike right now and look through the sites and see how many are Geocities pages.
Geocities has sort of become obsolete at this point, as those who want free pages can go to Myspace or Livejournal (or WordPress!) and do whatever they will with their space, while those who want their own web space can obtain it easily as getting web space and your own domain name is significantly easier now than it was 10 years ago all while being less expensive. Still, I feel we should pay our respects to Geocities, with its initial ridiculous URLs and its pop-up ads and remember how much it has done for anime fandom and online communities in general.