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The recent deletion of artist Dennis Cooper’s blog (and subsequently 14 years of his work) by Google has made international headlines. The artist is disgruntled, threatening to sue, the media and activists are up in arms because it reeks of censorship, and Google is quiet as a mouse about the whole ordeal. Meanwhile, online backup service providers are facepalming as they read about it.
On 27 June 2016 Dennis Cooper was informed that his blog, The Weaklings,which washosted on Blogger, a Google blogging app, was removed without any warning. Google is not offering any reason as to why the blog was deleted, but one can only speculate that it must have had something to do with the controversial nature of its content. The deletion of the blog is ascribed to censorship, and Cooper questions Google’s apparent abuse of power by removing alternative content.
The reasoning behind the removal of the blog and the controversial nature of the content aside, there is a bigger problem here that seems to be escaping everyone’s attention: data backup is extremely crucial! It is very unfortunate that Cooper did not have online backups of his work, and as necessary as it is to preserve freedom of speech and combat censorship (especially within the art world), it almost hurts more to think about the colossal tragedy that is the everyday loss of data – a tragedy that could have been easily averted by having online backup procedures in place.
Just because all of Dennis Cooper’s work was stored in the cloud (on the blogging page) didn’t necessarily mean that it was safe from loss. In fact, this misconception is prevalent amongst many users of the interwebs today: If it is in the cloud, it is safe. The reality is:the cloud is just someone else’s computer.
For that reason, it is imperative to have a backup of everything that you store in the cloud. We read so much about the importance of online backup in companies, but it is just as important for you as individual.
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Reading, 6 April 2020 – An unwelcome repercussion of employees snapping up laptops for home working ahead of the coronavirus lockdown has been an even bigger spike in cyber-criminal activity.Continue reading