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In our country, goodbye looks just like hello

I bought into a lie - we are always told that the internet is this huge repository, that a blog entry is stored forever in Google, and a hastily-chosen sentence come back to haunt you for years to come (right "wise Latina" Sonia Sotomayor?). A digital camera at the wrong party can take a picture of you laying in a sling covered in goo, and all of a sudden your future political career is over. Everything electronic is permanent, everything is searchable, and in cyberspace nobody knows you're not the same person you were when you opened that account years ago.

But this idea isn't true. In fact, I don't know of anything that can disappear faster than a website. A power surge, a mistyped DSN entry, a single press of a delete key, and entire novels of words can be gone. And I'm saying this is doubly true for social community websites - places where people congregate online. Those meeting places seem to be extremely ephemeral. Here is a list of websites that meant a lot to me at one time, and now they're gone:

greasetank.com (hot, HOT transgressive art and fiction)
yahoo groups (still there, but a shell of what they once were)
Armpits website (can't remember this one, but it was extremely good)
Google groups (again, these died when they started removing gay content)
nastybids.com (used to auction *anything* {grin})
suck.com (just gone)
raremusic.com (again, MIA)
In Passing (a better version of "Overhead In...")
360.yahoo.com (really kinky gay personal ads)
AOL Hometown webpages (hope you didn't invest much time or effort into creating a homepage here, 'cause it's gone now)
Tabula Rasa (a great sci-fi MMORPG by Richard Garriott)

Any other deleted websites you can think of?Collapse )

Have you tried using archive.org (wayback machine)? Granted, there's no new content (though in some cases, as in greasetank, no pictures) - and maybe that's what you are missing when they die, but if it's nostalgia you can see what was there and when it was there for a lot of these sites.
BTW, nice music you are listening to.

Edited at 2009-07-22 01:30 am (UTC)

Wayback machine is a blast. I grew up on geocities, angelfire, hometown, etc... rediscovering the old independently-written stories and pics is such a turn-on.

0holdsbarred it was my fav porn site and it vanished.

As Steve mentioned, I also suggest checking out the Wayback Machine and also some of Google's Archives. It's not complete, but then again I found stuff I posted back in 1982!

After the really sick IRC groups went down, I got bored with the net. When user-created rooms on yahoo went down, I swore I'd never get back online. ICUII is a decent substitute, but as a pay service, it doesn't have the same scope.

I guess it's just a matter of staying in touch with the freaks and finding out where we're going next.

Heck, I miss my own sites. www.Vulcan-America.com. My original Master did loads of work on some of the early sm-BBS boards Oracle, SMboard and SkinnerJacks Bathhouse. Our house had shelves and shelves of modems lined up in the kitchen. AOL and the like essentially killed those.

I am also scared of format obsolescence. My websites went down due to time and money concerns, but I still have the magazines. I still have thousands of photographs stacked in tubs that will likely out survive me, but lost several hundreds of pictures when a box of CD-roms got damaged. We're are in serious danger of losing a huge chunk of gay/kink history in our search for quick satisfaction.

I believe the website naughtybids.com is still there. I don't know if this is the "nasty" one you were thinking of.

Edited at 2009-07-22 06:19 am (UTC)

Yeah! That's the one. Though you can't buy used underwear any more from them. I have to go to wyoboot.com for that! {grin}

actually. the "original" bootjaq website is long long gone. but, there's a bit if history there. the site was hosted on best.com or .net or whatever, and he had bandwidth limits, only a specific amount of traffic per month, and then they'd cut him off, till the next month. when i first found his site, it would stay up most of the month, only missing a few days at the end of each month. within a few months, it was to a point that you could only get to his site for about a week at the beginning of each month, and then it was locked down.

so, i offered him space/bandwidth on my server. he split the site, and moved about half of it to my box. many months later, his primary site (on best.whatever) just never came back at the beginning of the month. I was sad. but, then I looked at my web logs, and said "well, shit, people are still hitting the content on my machine, even tho there are no links to it from anywhere"

I re-created as much of what I could of the orig. site, and added some stuff, and bootjac.org was born. now, it's just.. there. it could stand a revamp, it could stand more stuff being there, but I'm just not obsessed with it like I used to be. but... I run the machine, the machine will be there as long as I'm around, so I see no reason to take it down. unlike a lot of other places, I don't pay anything extra to make bootjac.org be there, the machine it runs on has to be up anyway, the only costs I have with it are keeping the domain registered now. so... there were other stories on the orig. site, and they were great, and now, alas, gone forever. I got some of them back, but not all of them.


Live in the moment, and enjoy it, maybe?

So yeah, just this evening, I noticed another old site -- one that I'd not visited in a long while - had disappeared without much trace.

So I do hear where you're coming from.

OBTW: it was the "Sweet Chastity" site, specializing in some really niche-y erotica lit: chastity play mostly with TG themes, and most known for a high tech (as in indistinguishable from magic") nanotech chastity milieu. I believe it was run by a fellow calling himself Mortice Deadlock.

on second thought (read: "investigation"), I retract that last sentence.