It’s a subject I keep coming back to. If you write content for the web, keep it all under your control. Text, images, code, domains …. the lot.
Colin Devroe writes about how even big, 100m-user sites can just suddenly disappear because they’re just “not worth the bother” to some big tech companies.
On a related note, companies can just change APIs at will too, screwing up some of the services you use. The Red Sweater blog writes about how MarsEdit can no longer support Blogger because Google is shutting down the Picasa Web Albums API.
I helped a friend of mine set up a Wordpress site a while ago and we were up and running with a blog on his own domain name, on a private server within about an hour. That’s all it takes.
I worry when people effectively journal on places like Facebook. They’re just not in control of their data. It seems incomprehensible that Facebook might one day disappear, but why take the risk? Why leave years of journals in a place where you have no real control? Use your own site and simply point to it via social media if you must.
Keep control of your data and back it up regularly.