Putting my thoughts here for feedback before sharing with larger forums.
What is this communities opinion on saving and potentially rehosting (breaking copyright) of RPG blogs, posts, etc. in the potential event of that contents host going down? We’ve had a lot of talk here about the enshittification of platforms and owning your content, but this introduces a whole separate set of issues involving server fees and local data loss.
If I were to post a game hack on my own blog/reddit/forum/pdf and I wanted to reference, say, a GLOG article, I would link to that article. But what if the GLOG ceases to exist? What if I link to a detailed and well-thought out reddit post, but now that subreddit has gone dark? Or something akin to the G+ fiasco happens again.
There’s a long (multi-year) series of posts on a thread from the defunct WOTC D&D forums that was very impactful to my GMing in the mid-2000s. I spent a fair amount of time searching for references to that thread until I came across someone who had copied down an xhtml archive of that thread and hosted it on a google drive. I copied it down, but a couple years later, I saw someone posting about looking for that same thread, but when I went to reference them to that xhtml archive, it had disappeared as well.
Is it the place of the RPG community to try and archive the posts and articles that inspire us?
My feeling at the moment is that as long as you preserve the original authorship, and do the best you can to link to the original source, if possible, I think you’re good. It’s the digital version of assembling collections of newspaper clippings or cutting out magazine articles. I’m not sure what the procedure is for preserving a blog post in the Internet Archive but that would be one way to do it without keeping personal custody over what you want to preserve.
Internet Archive is probably the most straightforward solution, but I’m not sure how that would work for something like a forum thread with dozens of pages. It certainly doesn’t crawl those pages on it’s own.
Yeah, no idea how it would work. After a thread has died/finished, you could probably upload each page of responses (or however it works) but it would be, I assume, a completely manual process.
(I cross-posted this to lemm.ee because I think it’s a worthy topic to discuss at the moment.)
I’m a total caveman when it comes to the topic.
Ultimately though if I come across some string of conversation spanning multiple years and I wanted to try to preserve it, I guess I’d print it so I had a hard copy?
From there you can archive it or share it however you like?
I don’t really expect anything to stick around on the internet unless it’s in some sort of dedicated Archive like Todd mentioned above.
I think it’s a personal decision for me, if something I come across is so important I know I’ll want to capture it and refer back to it at a later date, I get a hard copy. Maybe I’ll look at it, maybe I won’t. but I know it’s not going anywhere.