Web Apps, the New Lock-in, and the Opposite of Backup

Over at MNteractive.com, we’ve been talking about how to close your MySpace account. Leaving sites like MySpace and Friendster should be straight forward – simply delete me. Disconnecting me from all my ‘friends’. No biggy. Not letting me do that is both a privacy issue and a Google juice problem.

Sites like YouTube and Flicker are slightly different – I put stuff I find valuable there, but I’ve got a local copy of all that. No biggy.

The biggy is with sites like Amazon, eBay, BaseCamp, Stikipad, browser-only email, and other collaborative sites where the assets only exist on the service’s servers. What happens to my assets when I want to leave?

I see that there was export functionality, but ‘this feature is currently unavailable’ – Darren Barefoot

Ouch.

In addition to regularly backing up the important information on your local machines – the same goes for all the web-only services, what do we call this…a ‘back-down’?

More:

“…I’m not spending lots of my time building anything in a system where it is locked up, I can’t take it out, and am at their mercy on rate hikes and such.” – Dave Slusher

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