When Google made it possible to chat from with gmail without the need to use Google Talk it was considered a breakthrough and a really creative idea. Now Yahoo is following suit by allowing members to chat from within their Yahoo mail without needing to use Yahoo Messenger.
Unlike in the case of gmail where you can chat from within your gmail account and still be signed in at your Google Talk, Yahoo signs you out of Yahoo Messenger in order to be able to chat from within your Yahoo mail. I love the chat interface in gmail way better. Perhaps Yahoo email chat will evolve over time, but right now I find it very poor in turms of usability.