updated 04:59 pm EDT, Wed June 12, 2013
Some IDs have been unused for more than a decade
In a first-of-its-kind purge for the search engine, Yahoo is freeing up old IDs that have been inactive for at least 12 months. In mid-July, users can stake a claim on what Yahoo IDs they want to claim that have been in use. Yahoo will award the credentials in mid-August.
Existing Yahoo users who want to maintain IDs need only log into any Yahoo service before July 15. Electronista has learned that the company is expecting to be able to free nearly a billion user IDs, including some common names. Requests for user IDs also requested by others will be handled by lottery.