Yahoo Developer Network Guidelines


Yahoo makes many of its APIs available to developers for use off the Yahoo network. These guidelines address a number of the overarching issues that Developers should be aware of as they use these resources to build applications and web services using Yahoo APIs covered by the Yahoo API TOU.

These guidelines do not apply to all Yahoo APIs. Some Yahoo APIs, such as those for Yahoo Messenger, are governed by API-specific terms and guidelines. For API-specific implementation guidelines and information such as rate limits, please visit the individual API and Web Services information page, a list of which can be found here.

Commercial Usage Allowances and Restrictions

The Yahoo Developer Network allows broader access to our Web Services and APIs, including for many commercial applications. Our commercial usage policies differ depending on the API or Web Service you are using. Such policies are explained in the documentation of each API or Web Service and/or in these Guidelines, so please read all of the documentation carefully.

Some of our APIs and Web Services are made available only for non-commercial use. For such APIs and Web Services, it's NOT PERMITTED to:

  • Use these services in high traffic, established commercial-oriented or business web sites or applications;
  • Incorporate these services into applications or websites monetized indirectly (by advertising, affiliate links) or directly - including subscriber-only content (subscriptions, software-as-a-service, hosted applications where your users pay for access) and for-pay applications, products or services; and
  • Access these services through productivity tools for businesses created to bring value to a business function, typically only accessible to select users

Please see our FAQ for more information about these non-commercial use only services. If you use these services in your application, we encourage you to register your application to confirm that your usage is acceptable. We typically do not grant additional queries for these non-commercial use only services.

Collection and Storage of User Data

Access to Yahoo user data is only permissible using approved authentication methods, such as Browser Based Authentication and OAuth.

Per the Yahoo API TOU, you may not store any user data collected through the Yahoo APIs for more than 24 hours, with the exception of information that is explicitly permitted to be indefinitely stored. Only the parameters listed below are storable indefinitely; all other information must be requested from Yahoo each time.

Yahoo user data that is storable indefinitely:

  • GUID (Global Unique Identifier)
  • Authenticated Token Value.