Google is pulling the plug on Google Answers, a service that allows people to submit questions over the Internet that researchers answer for a fee. The search giant didn't say why it was closing the service, which launched about four years ago and was one of Google's first non-search projects. Danny Sullivan, editor in chief of SearchEngineWatch.com, said the service never achieved the popularity of Yahoo's rival offering, Yahoo Answers.
Google will stop accepting new questions for the service later this week, it said in its official blog late Tuesday. It will accept new answers to questions until the end of the year, and it will maintain the archive of questions and answers online for browsing. "Google is a company fueled by innovation, which to us means trying lots of new things all the time -- and sometimes it means reconsidering our goals for a product," the company said.