My question is like those above. Is there anyway still to retrieve my journals and homepages? I tried before the deadline but nothing happened. These are my memories. Things I wanted to remember about my kids. And when I tried to access them before the deadline I was unable to. Otherwise I would have printed it all out. Please help.
We’re talking about terabytes, terabytes of data, of hundreds of thousands of man-hours of work, crafted by people, an anthropological bonanza and a critical part of online history, wiped out because someone had to show that they were cutting costs this quarter.
It’s an eviction; a mass eviction that happened under our noses and we let it happen.
I’ve been evicted before – I was kicked out of a boarding house I used to live in between 1992 and 1997. Eviction laws were in place and I was sent notification after notification, shoved into my mailbox, left under my door, explaining my rights and how to appeal and how much time I had. It was done during the summer months, because winter would be a hardship. It was handled coldly, nastily, but it was done according to law, and luckily, I had a place to move onto. (They were closing up the building to turn it into professional space, which it is to this day.)
When we evict people from their webpages, fuck all is required.
... I’m saying that, like a real eviction, there should be practices in place. When you open your doors to hosting user content, you should have rules in action that, unless it’s a complete and total fire sale and you have no hope of even staying open that long, then you should be required, yes by law, assholes, to make the data available to customers for an extended period of time.
So what do we do?
Well, let me give a personal example.
Through one of the weblogs I browse, I found out a website called podango.com (a podcast hosting site) was going down. The word had gone out to subscribers of the service that the company was going to be going through some rough times, much as a hedgehog being thrown into a blender was in for some tough times, and maybe you should get your shit off our servers immediately. In line with what I’ve been talking about, they gave everyone five days at the end of December 2008 to do it. Five days. Five days versus four weeks; what’s the gooddamn difference? Technically savvy people given less than a week, over Christmas, to figure out how their data was going to be transferred, to figure out how to get RSS feeds transferred. Some people came back from holidays and found all their shit gone. Didn’t check e-mail during Christmas? Sorry, podcaster!
So what did I do?
I fucking downloaded it.
... What you’re looking at is about 70 gigabytes of data from podango.com, lock stock and barrel. Over 4000 distinct episodes of podcasts. It took my machine five solid days to do it, but I downloaded all of that lame site. Do I have a favorite podcast on there? No. Did I know someone with a podcast on there? No.
I did it because I had the means (disk space), the motive (the sense of history and the recognition that this was historically relevant work representing thousands of hours) and the opportunity (a fast connection and five days before they were to die). A back-of-envelope calculation tells me I just rescued 41 days of podcast, along with all relevantly hosted images, show descriptions and XML data.
This one will pay back immediately; people are already contacting me, profusely thanking me.
So what am I saying here?
We need the A-Team.
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