Yahoo's My Web offers both personal and social search features, but until now you've had to go through Yahoo 360 to invite others to share information. Later tonight, Yahoo will be dropping that requirement, allowing you to add anyone as a contact if they have saved public information in their My Web accounts.
"This is a launch to simplify the addition of contacts," said Tim Mayer, Director of Product Management Yahoo! Search. "It's about lowering the barriers to entry to mainstream users so they can experience social search."
The idea is to allow people to quickly build up contacts that have saved and tagged useful information without having to make explicit, personal contact with them.
Yahoo will also be introducing a new feature called "contact labels" that allow you to create small groups and only share material with people within those groups—for example, friends, family, co-workers and so on. The feature is similar to one offered in Yahoo's photo-sharing service, Flickr. Labeling your contacts in theory increases the amount of control you have over what is shared with whom.
Yahoo has begun the process of rolling out the changes to My Web 2.0, and the new features should be fully enabled by midnight pacific time tonight.