Google Answers Get Recycled

Dennis Faas's picture

Although Google pulled the plug on its Google Answers service in November, not everyone who worked on the project was quite as willing to toss their service in the trash. A group of researchers who worked on the Google Answers project have decided to reincarnate the service into a similar one called Uclue.

Uclue is definitely reminiscent of Google Answers. It allows users to ask a question and set a price, ranging from $5 to $250, in return for having their question answered. Although Google eliminated Google Answers when the service failed to rake in solid traffic, the researchers who worked on the project are attempting to hold on to its fans. (Source:

Despite the similarities to Google Answers, Uclue maintains its independence due to some improvements it has made as well as the fact that it is no longer run by Google. Not being a part of Google may initially sound like a pitfall, but the researchers behind the project ensure that the opposite is true.

As researcher David Sarokin explained, "Google Answers was a small piece of large international company with multibillion dollar assets. Uclue is a large piece of a small international company with multi-thousands in assets." In other words, the focus of Uclue is Uclue, whereas the focus of Google was much more dispersed. (Source:

Unlike Google Answers, Uclue does not charge users a listing fee (Google had charged $0.50). Further, Uclue has nixed Google Answers' practices of imposing limits on what topics can and cannot be discussed (except illegal activities) and using a roaming bot to lock questions with certain words. Uclue also answers questions in English, German and Spanish, whereas Google Answers only operated in English. (Source:

Sarokin adds "the differences shouldn't mask an important similarity, though, which is the quality and commitment of the researchers." (Source:

Currently, Uclue is still in beta testing. But as researchers continue to develop the service, many outsiders cannot help but wonder how successful this service can really be. There are numerous answer services, many of which do not charge users. If Uclue wants to be a player in this industry, it may need a bit more going for it other than being a recycled version of Google's leftovers.

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