Google "deletes" artist's blog, erasing 12 years of work

Talking of which… how on earth do you back up your stuff that’s on google? Google photos for instance… multiple ways to get them up there, but how do you get them back down again?

Well, that’s how it felt whenever I used to try to read a Terms of Service “agreement.”


Been there:

I have been too overworked and exhausted to sit down and amend this thread, but there is a happy-ish ending that I have yet to report.


Which is?

There’s Takeout:

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Because that’s incredibly expensive, time consuming, requires more technical knowledge than most people should need, and is on the balance wildly less reliable.

So far the only local backup I’ve ever made that has survived any length of time has been a home-brew RAID 5 Linux fileserver running SMB [knocks furiously on wood, but not too close to the server…]. And I know that even that is not as safe as a cloud storage system, even with the dangers of being hacked or getting on the bad side of some bureaucratic nonsense (see above).


Short form: writing to elected officials appears to have worked, for now.


I’ve lost track of the numbers of HD failures I’ve had - Mac file systems suck at reliability.

I think most people do not realize that long term digital archiving is an ongoing problem. We get used to the idea that digital copies are perfect, but the reality is that behind the scenes bits are constantly rotting.


I am curious why Google nuked it?

TOS violation. His fiction contained pedophilia and incest. I’m thinking he didn’t keep local backups because he didn’t want child pornography on his personal computer.


They have a responsibility to honor the terms of our contract. You’re correct, I may actually not be paying for anything but empty hopes, but hopefully I have read and understood the terms of our contract. But, if I’m using “free” hosting, I’m not even paying anything, and I can expect even less.

" You don’t have to blame the victim, a nontechnical person who had no idea how or why a data host could screw him."

Except shit happens, and he should have planned for it.

Yeah, but will that work if the blog has already been nuked?

Oh well then…
All I gotta say to that then is OOPS.


I should post my source for that. No idea if it’s correct or not.


Hmm…the linked article notes this:

[quote]“Why the blog was taken down remains unclear. One commenter on Cooper’s
Facebook page speculated that someone may have reported the blog due to
its containing some sexually charged material. But as Artforum
skeptically notes, the page was behind an 18+ content warning and
“Cooper had posted risqué work on his blog for years.” It also wouldn’t
explain the deletion of his email address.”[/quote]

The “it’s never been a problem before” could just mean “They never caught me before, so I should be able to get away with it forever” or “they are being inconsistent and arbitrary”. Hard to know based on the article. Also, the point about the email stands, or does it? If he had TOS violating content on his blog, his emails may have contained it , too. So, dunno.

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Indeed – like negative interest. (!)

I think it’s more:


This could also have happened to a guy who had his set up his own domain, but the hosting ISP went out of business and/or suffered a catastrophic server event.

And this is why my dissertation is nowhere near a cloud… And has a backed up copy in a lock box.


From the article:

Admittedly, not everything has vanished. The Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine has saved bits and pieces of Cooper’s blog dating back to January 3, 2012, but they are just snapshots of the blog’s front page for a given date, not capturing the blog in its entirety.

I do not trust “the cloud.” Not one bit. If my employer looses the stuff I’ve done for them, I can go code elsewhere. My laptop - everything on the hard drive with backups. I feel like Battlestar Gallactica.