Searching a Yahoo! Group

14 02 2015

These instructions are mostly for members of a specific Yahoo! Group I belong to, but the general principles should apply to searching all Yahoo! Groups.

Often,┬ánewbies will ask questions that others have covered some days, weeks, months, or even years ago. We were all newbies once and we all needed help at various stages, but when you’ve been on any sort of group for a while, you see the same questions seemingly a million times, so you tune out and tend not to answer — or you leave the group.

So here are some instructions for searching a Yahoo! Group BEFORE you ask a question, just to see if it’s been covered before and if there are some pearls of wisdom that have already been shared by other members.

  1. Open your Group’s page in a web browser. If you get your Group’s messages via email, the quickest way to do that is to click the link to View Your Group at the bottom of each email from the Group. (Note: Email programs may differ in how they display this link — the screen shot below is from Outlook 2010)
  2. If asked to do so, log in to your Yahoo! Group.
  3. On your Groups’ home page, there’s a search box (it has ‘Search Conversations’ in it) near the top of the screen. Type your search word or phrase┬áinto that search box.
  4. Click Search Groups.
  5. Your results will display, telling you how many results in total, and showing the latest message first.
  6. If you want to narrow the search results (advisable if there are too many to deal with), click Advanced Search.
  7. Complete some of the details on the Advanced Search form, then click Search.
  8. Your result set will be much smaller.

In the screen shots above, I first searched for tension and got some 2500 results, then I clicked Advanced Search, added my own name as the Author and tension as a word I wanted to find in any Message I’d sent to the Group. This time the search revealed 119 results — a much more manageable number.

Another option is to browse messages by month, which is very handy if you go ‘no mail’ for a period of time (such as when you go on vacation). The links for messages by month are at the bottom of the home page for your Yahoo! Group.