Facing Facebook opposition, Yandex presses pause on Wonder

Written on:January 30, 2013
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When Facebook says no, that means no. After launching a beta version of its Wonder app, which aims to give users voice-driven access to information about their contacts’ activities across various social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, Yandex has put the app on hold.

When Wonder launched in the U.S., Russia’s Yandex was keen to maintain that it wasn’t a ‘search engine’ – it just helped people search for information from within specific networks. Facebook, which recently launched its own network search capabilities, didn’t see things that way, and shut off its Graph API
to Wonder almost immediately.

“It was confirmed that Facebook views the application Wonder as something that violates the Facebook Platform Policies and that the access to Facebook’s Graph API will not be restored,” Yandex said in a statement on Wednesday.

“Wonder’s functioning, in its current state, as well as the quality of user experience it provides, largely depends on the access to Facebook’s Graph API. Since this access was revoked, we decided to put our application on hold for the time being.”

Yandex went on to say it was considering partnership opportunities with other social networks. But really, without Facebook the app has a big hole in it for many if not most users.

Which is a shame, given that Wonder is all about letting users search across the data and human connections that they themselves have donated to Facebook and others. That’s not how Facebook sees it, though, so – at least for now – end of story.

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