The internet has got to be the greatest creation that has ever been invented. With just a few clicks you can surf the World Wide Web with ease: From sending emails, keeping in touch with family or just trying to pass time, the internet brings any information that you desire into your home with just a few left-clicks. With so many great looking and highly polished websites its hard to think of what some of them looked like at launch, but here are ten pictures that might well shock you…


This is what YouTube used to look like!

This is what YouTube used to look like!

10 – YouTube

YouTube is the number one video sharing site online. Usually the “I will only watch this one video and I will come off the computer” turns into a 3-hour video watching marathon. It’s easy to see what’s so fascinating about the site and what keeps us going back for more. Here is some Trivia to tell your friends: YouTube started off as a Dating Website, but after the loss of interest from the webmasters, Google acquired the domain for $1.65 billion. Above is what the site looked like on May 5th, 2005.

This is what Windows Live used to look like!

This is what Windows Live used to look like!

9 – Windows Live

If you have an email account then it will probably be through Windows Live (Hotmail). There will be a portion of you that have opted for a Gmail or Yahoo email, but with Windows Live being number 7 on the popular website list, it suggests that Hotmail is the free email king. Personally, I check my email every other hour to see if anyone loves us. I never owned a PC back in 1998 never mind an email account, so I cannot say how well the system was – I wonder if you received spam emails back then too?

This is what Twitter used to look like!

This is what Twitter used to look like!

8 – Twitter

Twitter, the site with the little blue bird that allows you to send messages (tweets) of up to 140 characters to your friends and family. Twitter may be only number 10 on my top ten most visited websites in the world, but not bad for a site that was created only in 2006. Also, I am guilty of it: Following my favourite celebrities to find out what they are up to.

This is what Amazon.com used to look like!

This is what Amazon.com used to look like!

7 – Amazon.com

Ok, now back to a site that everybody should be familiar with…Amazon. When shopping online you need a site that you can trust. You could perform a Google search and find a site that way, but usually, you are either going to use eBay or Amazon. Apart from a new clean look, the site hasn’t changed too much over the years, apart from the addition of a lot more products of course.

This is what QQ.com used to look like!

This is what QQ.com used to look like!

6 – QQ.com

Unless you live in China or you are fluent in Chinese then more than likely you won’t use QQ, nor know what it is. This site’s full name is Tencent QQ and it is basically the Chinese version of MSN. The main reasons for its popularity in China are due to its IM integration (instant messaging) and news coverage. According to Wayback-Machine this is how the site looked on May 26th, 1998. The Movie Palace? It seems the Webmaster may have registered the site with a different path in mind.

This is what Yahoo! used to look like!

This is what Yahoo! used to look like!

5 – Yahoo!

As you know, Yahoo and MSN are more than just websites: They are news portals, emails providers, IM providers, they host games and more. People tend to pick one or the other and it looks like people tend to favour Yahoo – with MSN coming in at number 19. Yahoo started off primarily as a search engine/directory, but as you can tell, they have come a long way since then and their business model has definitely taken a turn for the better.

This is what Baidu.com used to look like!

This is what Baidu.com used to look like!

4 – Baidu.com

What, you have never heard of Baidu? Haha, neither have we, but looking at the site gives us slight déjà vu. Where have I seen that site before? Ah yes, Google! Baidu is the largest search engine in China and it seems someone may have been copying as it looks like it’s been made to look very, very much like Google.

This is what Wikipedia used to look like!

This is what Wikipedia used to look like!

3 – Wikipedia

Wikipedia, a source of knowledge! No matter if you wish to know Johnny Depp’s job before he was famous or who invented the car, Wikipedia knows it all. The site is edited by us the people for those who are wondering how the site seems to know everything about everything. As you can see, back on September 28, 2002, Wikipedia was still the online encyclopaedia that I have all grown to love. probably with a lot less information than its current self.

This is what Facebook used to look like!

This is what Facebook used to look like!

2 – Facebook

It shouldn’t be any surprise to see that Facebook is number 2 on the 10 most visited websites in the world list; after all, it’s usually where people spend most of their free time. Facebook, an online revolutionary social networking site that allows you to keep in contact with friends and family from around the world – it also allows you to be nosey too. If you have seen the film The Social Network then you will be well aware of how a guy started Facebook to connect people in colleges. Just imagine if the name “The Facebook” actually stuck. “Two seconds, Mum, I am just checking “The Facebook!”

This is what Google.com used to look like!

This is what Google.com used to look like!

1 – Google.com

Yeah, as you have probably guessed, the search engine king that is Google is in at number 1. More than likely you will use Google daily to search for things online. Without them, the internet would have not been the same and finding things online might have been near impossible – unless you typed in random URLs hoping of finding what you were looking for. Sure there are other search engines, but Google were the originators. This is what Google looked like back in December 2, 1998. As design goes not too much has changed. It’s nice to see that their first logo design has practically kept the same over the years.

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