The furor had its effect, and Yahoo! has once again reunited Jerusalem.
Earlier this month, surfers seeking the weather forecast for the Holy City found that it was no longer listed on the site. Instead, those interested in Jerusalem were forced to choose between “West Jerusalem, Yerushalayim” and “East Jerusalem, West Bank.”
As the weather in both was invariably precisely the same - for there is not even a delineated border between them, and the latitude and longitude coordinates for both locations are the same - it was clear that the division was purely political.
The uproar was quick in coming. The Israeli government protested, as did the Simon Wiesenthal Center, and the issue received extensive coverage in Jewish media. A letter from the Wiesenthal Center to Yahoo!’s CEO Carol Bartz stated, “We are sure you are aware how offensive this is, because, since 1967, Jerusalem has been the undivided capital of the State of Israel. For Yahoo to unilaterally decide to divide the city is offensive and insulting to friends of Israel everywhere.” The letter also noted that Yahoo does not make such a distinction in other disputed territories around the world.
The pressure worked, and Jerusalem has now been reunited on the Yahoo! website, and therefore on the weather software application for Apple iPhone as well. “West Jerusalem” and “East Jerusalem” no longer appear there; “Jerusalem - Yerushalayim” is one on Yahoo! and Apple.
“We are gratified that Yahoo! recognized its mistake and moved so quickly to correct its weather site and app,” said Rabbi Meyer H. May, executive director of the Wiesenthal Center.
Yahoo! weather information for Jerusalem on Tuesday was that the temperature feels like 94 degrees Fahrenheit, with 58 percent humidity, and high temperatures expected to continue through tomorrow. Sunrise and sunset on the second-longest day of the year in the Holy City are 5:34 AM and 7:49 PM, respectively.