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Internet Archive Needs Donations, Has Matching Donor

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the they-do-amazing-stuff dept.

Christmas Cheer 58

The Internet Archive curates an astounding collection (actually, a collection of collections) of online resources, from historically significant to modern but obscure. Storing, serving and organizing more than 10 petabytes isn't cheap, despite their ongoing efforts to innovate on that front. An anonymous reader writes "An anonymous donor is matching $3 for every $1 given (up to $450,000) until December 31. One petabyte has been paid for so far and the archive is looking at getting three more. 'These massive servers are the backbone of the Archive, and critical to our continued growth. To all of you who've contributed to our fundraising drive, thanks from all of us here at the Internet Archive. '"

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Hey Google, do something! (1)

faragon (789704) | about 2 years ago | (#42380873)

Where are our #Google overlords when it is required? Come on! :-)

Re:Hey Google, do something! (5, Insightful)

Patch86 (1465427) | about 2 years ago | (#42380949)

I wonder where the national support is. They're basically doing the job of the Library of Congress, the British Library etc., in terms of being a record keeper of published material. You'd think those organisations (and there must be dozens and dozens of them throughout the world; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_deposit [wikipedia.org] ) could each chip in a few thousand dollars a year, wouldn't you?

Re:Hey Google, do something! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42380989)

Yeah but it isn't a book so screw those guys.

Maybe they should PRINT THE INTERNET, that might catch a few million donations for the effort.
They couldn't turn it down then! Your move bookworms.

Re:Hey Google, do something! (1)

Princeofcups (150855) | about 2 years ago | (#42382295)

I wonder where the national support is. They're basically doing the job of the Library of Congress, the British Library etc., in terms of being a record keeper of published material. You'd think those organisations (and there must be dozens and dozens of them throughout the world; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_deposit [wikipedia.org] ) could each chip in a few thousand dollars a year, wouldn't you?

They can't because there might be a single copyrighted file in there, and that would make it IP piracy! This is like someone trying to set up National Parks when a territory has been designated for land grab. The Internet Archive undermines all the paywalls, and big business will not let their pet governments aid in that. As a matter of fact, I'm really surprised that they haven't been sued out of existence yet. It's only a matter of time before they have to move the servers to Borneo, or someplace.

Re:Hey Google, do something! (1)

DrVxD (184537) | about 2 years ago | (#42384001)

They can't because there might be a single copyrighted file in there, and that would make it IP piracy!

Actually, there's already a massive amount of copyrighted material on there (most material is implicitly copyright in most jurisdictions UNLESS the authour takes specific steps to ensure otherwise).

Printing it wouldn't make it any more pirated than simply archiving it.

Re:Hey Google, do something! (1)

Jawnn (445279) | about 2 years ago | (#42382499)

I wonder where the national support is. They're basically doing the job of the Library of Congress, the British Library etc., in terms of being a record keeper of published material. You'd think those organisations (and there must be dozens and dozens of them throughout the world; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_deposit [wikipedia.org] ) could each chip in a few thousand dollars a year, wouldn't you?

You're right, of course. I can think of few expenditures of public funds than this, but I just don't have the stomach for the argument that would ensue over spending public funds on archiving .

Re:Hey Google, do something! (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 2 years ago | (#42382781)

I wonder where the national support is. They're basically doing the job of the Library of Congress, the British Library etc.,

Good, sounds like they're becoming obsolete, on a very tiny budget. Yay, technology.

could each chip in a few thousand dollars a year, wouldn't you?

Eh, they have thousands of pensions to fund instead of archiving stuff.

Re:Hey Google, do something! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42383543)

It's not Google's responsibility, and I hope Google stays out of the Internet Archive.

The IA is an Alexa project, Alexa is a division of Amazon. Alexa didn't ask anyone's permission for the initial archive in which they just vacuumed up every site they could spider. At least, they did retroactively allow people to exclude content that was archived, though I am sure they just blocked the content and didn't actually delete it.

Let Alexa/Amazon fend for themselves, and on user donations only. They aren't paying the users of the sites they did archive any money at all.

(And come to think of it, Google isn't paying the users of the Usenet posts they not only bought from DejaNews, but the ones they got from private archives to backfill their archive.)

You want user content? Either get it donated or pay the users. Don't just think because you can spider it and archive it to disk, it is yours to keep.

Re:Hey Google, do something! (1)

magic maverick (2615475) | about 2 years ago | (#42386371)

Ah yeah. Funny thing. Did you know the NLA does give money to the IA to run PANDORA? So there's one. The Library of Congress also works with the IA to build specific collections. So that's two. Other national libraries (and non-national libraries) also work with the IA to build collections of web based material. And they generally pay for it...

Did you know that legal deposit often doesn't cover electronic material? The NLA, for example, has no legal right to collect electronic material, and asks permission before archiving a website.

The more you know...

Re:Hey Google, do something! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42393983)

Since they only adhere to US copyright laws and cache a much higher percentage of English language sites than others (I run multiple sites in multiple languages and can observe this), good luck on getting donations for the rest of the world

Re:Hey Google, do something! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42380999)

No use, it can't be monetized. At least not until someone finds a way to extort people with all that backed up internet data which will never go away. I imagine a little 'clean up' service could be quite lucrative it you had control of the data..

Re:Hey Google, do something! (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 2 years ago | (#42381103)

Can someone just post the Internet to their Facebook page? Or takes pictures of the Internet, and use Instagram?

Of course, this may lead to some recursion problems. And who will own that Internet backup . . . ?

Donation Link (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42380893)

Here's the link to donate [archive.org] just in case the editor's oversite would be enough to disuade you.

Re:Donation Link (3, Funny)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#42380941)

An anonymous reader writes

An anonymous donor is matching...

And an Anonymous Coward gives us the missing link.

Re:Donation Link (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381033)

An Anonymous Coward is the missing link, you insensitive clod!

Re:Donation Link (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381097)

Here's the link to donate [archive.org] just in case the editor's oversite would be enough to disuade you.

It was an oversight?

Re:Donation Link (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381309)

Pedantic AC here, letting you know it should be oversight

Re:Donation Link (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | about 2 years ago | (#42381375)

For all intensive porpoises, their the same.

Re:Donation Link (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42383041)

Four awl intensive porpoises, there the same.

Ya missed a couple.

Re:Donation Link (0)

OneAhead (1495535) | about 2 years ago | (#42384065)

Oooh now I get it! You ACs are just like the Smurfs. Pedantic AC, First Post AC, Microsoft Shill AC, Ignorant AC, AWG Denialist AC, Treehuggin' Hippy AC, Crazy Libertarian AC,... And all the ACs that don't have specific names are just collectively referred to as "The Trolly ACs".

Re:Donation Link (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381927)

Donated and done! What one AC can start, another can continue. Besides, there isn't a lot of activity on this story - something many of us have or will use.

Well... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42380917)

Should we support them despite their unwillingness to keep records for websites which later-on put a robots.txt on their domain?

I can understand recently archived material being removed, but when someone buys a domain down the line and puts a robots.txt on their new site, it removes ALL OF THE PAST MATERIAL! And it seems that Archive.org tends to ignore the problem.

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381011)

I can assure you, the websites I've had are not worth preserving and considering some of the crap I had, paying to archive it is a complete waste of money.

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42385617)

speaking as an historian: one person's crap is another's treasure trove.

Re:Well... (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42382611)

Doesn't remove it permanently, just hides it.

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42382721)

That is annoying -- it lets a domain owner play "Ministry of Truth" and hide everything with one easy step. That said, I sent a few bucks their way because their service has been very useful in the past. And idiots who take something embarrassing down often don't realize IA is serving it until it's too late.

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42383389)

My phrasing it as a question meant not to discourage people from sending money their way. I meant it to get people thinking about their archiving, or lack their-of. I seriously hope poster #42382611 is correct in that they simply hide it.

Here is what I think should be done...
1. Archive.org should only remove current material when a robots.txt is placed.
2. To remove past material, the domain owner needs to contact Archive.org and request a removal (perhaps just hiding it).
3. We need the robots.txt standard changed so #2 above can be automated for durations specified. Perhaps "Remove: /" without the quotes to take place of "Disallow: /" removing past material, but only for archival purposes.
In other words, search engines operating need not worry since they only deal with temporary caches. (Someone putting "Remove: /" but not "Disallow: /" would result in past archival material being hid away, but wouldn't touch current material. Perhaps it's okay for current things to be cached, but not saved indefinitely in that situation.)

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42383101)

Alternatively, they could be sued for copyright infringement daily.

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42386403)

Regardless of the state of the material you're asking for, the answer is: Yes, you should support the Internet Archive.

Why?

Because it's an awesome organisation and let's still say regardless of the state of the material you're asking for, they do save A LOT of material and they get things done with a pretty much minimal footprint.

That in it self, is in my mind worth supporting.

Regarding the content in the Wayback Machine that is not accessible, I assure you it's only 'darkened out' (ie. only hidden from public view). The content is of course still there. I know it's a touchy feely subject and that IA previously hasn't undarkened content - but I would assume that's because they have other things to do with their small force of man power, and besides; the content is still there - so they could still do it anytime in the future.

So, we pledge (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42380935)

And encourage them to keep archiving things we might not want archived in the future. Great plan for privacy.

Just upload it to the cloud (1, Funny)

alen (225700) | about 2 years ago | (#42380939)

Unlimited storage and CHEAP

Re:Just upload it to the cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381403)

Just to clue you in, Internet Archive can't afford the cloud. Amazon S3 storage is 0.055USD per GB per month in petabyte quantities. Meaning 10PB would cost 6.6M USD per year, and the figure doesn't include traffic or transaction costs.

Re:Just upload it to the cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381445)

The cloud is not cheap AT ALL, AWS is shitballs expensive.

What about videos ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42380979)

Can we lose such insightful videos like this ?
Portugal [youtube.com]
Next portugese president [youtube.com]

Have to say it (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42380985)

And they accept Bitcoin ( http://archive.org/about/faqs.php#311 ). They've received 686btc so far( http://blockchain.info/address/17gN64BPHtxi4mEM3qWrxdwhieUvRq8R2r ). Not bad.

Re:Have to say it (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 2 years ago | (#42382209)

Ooh that's around $10,000 USD. Not bad indeed. And y'all didn't think this was a bitcoin story, lol.
Btw, if they have a decent amount of lolcat collections in there, they could definitely make up that much money selling funny lolcat shirts!

Re:Have to say it (1)

magic maverick (2615475) | about 2 years ago | (#42386373)

Ya. I donated a few of my coins. I'm not sure how the matching donations thing works though. Does anyone know?

$10,000 so far via Bitcoin! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42397667)

And they accept Bitcoin [archive.org] . They've received 800btc so far [blockchain.info] . Not bad, that's USD$10,500 according to BTC-E (up 112btc/$1470 in ~48h).

(this is merely a linkified+updated version of the parent comment, with currency exchange)

Note, I am not sure if this triggers the 3x matching.

Only Paypal or Amazon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381007)

I would give them something ... but they only accept payments via Paypal or Amazon - neither organisation I wish to have dealings with.

Re:Only Paypal or Amazon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42381169)

Banks are corrupt, credit card companies are corrupt, PayPal and Amazon are immoral, I don't believe in coins and notes and the bastards don't accept gold nuggets (not that I have any). So screw them and their archive.

Not like you can't use a credit card through PayPal without having an account. But at least you have principles.

Re:Only Paypal or Amazon (1)

junk (33527) | about 2 years ago | (#42383989)

I went to donate and saw that. I'm actually very unhappy about it but I won't be able to donate because they only accept payment via systems I don't trust. If there a direct payment option, I'd have opened my wallet immediately but I refuse to do business with PayPal and just don't trust Amazon. Call me paranoid but it is what it is.

Re:Only Paypal or Amazon (1)

junk (33527) | about 2 years ago | (#42383997)

Correction: I'm mailing a check. Pain in the ass but at least I'm reducing the number of untrusted hands involved in my transaction.

Re:Only Paypal or Amazon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42384429)

What checks are you mailing? Asking them to check their bank account? Or check their UPS? Or check their payment options? A cheque would be much more useful.

great service (4, Interesting)

ssam (2723487) | about 2 years ago | (#42381347)

I was recently involved in producing a feature length creative commons film. we wanted to make it available as a http download (as well as bittorrent and streaming via youtube). we used internet archive. its been downloaded over 25k times from them. finding a commercial host that could manage that would have cost a fair bit of money (which we don't have). so thanks archive.org, hope my donation helps.

Re:great service (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42383869)

Hey, please throw a link to the film here! It might even encourage someone to donate!

Minimum suggested level $25? (0)

BenJeremy (181303) | about 2 years ago | (#42381483)

That's a bit too much. I gave them $5, which I think everybody who ever used the archives could afford without blinking. I've also given money to Wikipedia, even though they continue to hound users for money there, as well.

Re:Minimum suggested level $25? (1, Insightful)

RealGene (1025017) | about 2 years ago | (#42381553)

Might I suggest that you are a cheapskate.
$25/annum = 7 cents ($0.07) per day.
How much do you pay for your mobile data plan and/or ISP?

Re:Minimum suggested level $25? (3, Insightful)

drosboro (1046516) | about 2 years ago | (#42381693)

Really? Did you just call a guy who ACTUALLY donated a cheapskate?

Compare how often you use your mobile data plan and/or ISP to how often you use archive.org's services. I use my ISP every single day, for hours, and couldn't get a lot of my work done without them. I still gripe about how much I'm forced to pay them, too! By comparison, I've maybe looked for one site (which wasn't there) on archive.org in the last year or two.

They need $150,000 in donations. At BenJeremy's $5 level, they'd only need 30,000 donors. Just gonna guess his donation will come in well above the median for users of the site.

Re:Minimum suggested level $25? (3, Interesting)

BenJeremy (181303) | about 2 years ago | (#42381783)

Might I suggest that you are a cheapskate.

$25/annum = 7 cents ($0.07) per day.

How much do you pay for your mobile data plan and/or ISP?

So, it would have been better for me to look at the $25 level, say "too much" and walk away without donating anything? At least people wouldn't berate me.

I have to wonder how many people looked at that $25 level and said, "too much" - probably a lot of money walked away from that page. People willing to donate $25 will pay $25. They don't need a minimum suggested level.

As for your math, I've used the archives fewer times than I can count on my fingers.... I don't use it every day. It's faulty logic to calculate what this sort of service is worth to an individual... even individuals use the archives differently, some to dig up old content from a site they might have once gone to, others use it to recover content they once had on their own sites; the latter might be inclined to (and should) give more - I'm not in that group.

Re:Minimum suggested level $25? (3, Informative)

RealGene (1025017) | about 2 years ago | (#42383395)

Here's the problem:
Amazon payments charges:
Transactions greater than or equal to $10.00: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction. So a $25 donation yields $23.97 to archive.org, or 95 cents on the dollar.
Transactions less than or equal to $9.99: 5.0% + $0.05 per transaction. So a $5 donation yields $4.70, or 94 cents on the dollar.


Now, they are most likely using Amazon's volume payment system, so are paying between 2.2 and 2.5% + $0.30 per transaction, but only for transactions greater than $9.99. Let's assume the lower rate (although it's calculated as a 3-month average, so I doubt they're eligible). Now a $25 donation yields $24.15, or 96 cents on the dollar. It's just not as cost-effective for them to solicit tiny donations (btw, PayPal's rates are similar).

As to the worth of the service, whether you use it or not, archive.org is still there 24/7/365. Would you prefer to submit your query and then wait 72 hours for the results?

..and yes, I donated also.

Re:Minimum suggested level $25? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42383095)

Not the OP but I use my ISP far far more than I have used the Internet Archive.

So $5 bucks seems more than reasonable enough.

Re:Minimum suggested level $25? (1, Informative)

kervin (64171) | about 2 years ago | (#42382377)

It's suggested. As you found, you can type a lesser amount in the textbox. Where's the issue?

thanks for the info (2)

junk (33527) | about 2 years ago | (#42383391)

Many things on /. are worthy of debate and lead to much trolling. This isn't. This is a Good Thing. I'm throwing in a couple bucks and anyone old enough to remember what a phone call and how pagers work should too.

Network for Good (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42384037)

I use this website networkforgood.org [networkforgood.org] to give to charities annually. It's functional and every charity I looked for was there. I split my donations up because I don't have a lot of money, and hope that diversified charitable donation is as effective as diversified financial investment. So I give around $20 to 10 organizations (now 11, just added Internet Archive [archive.org] to the list) every year (and hope to do so indefinitely, and to increase the amounts and add some other orgs if I have more money in the future).

You can control your preferences as to how much you give each, how often, designating the donation, what information they receive about you, etc.

Are there other similar non-profit donation systems like this I should consider instead?

Just say no... (2)

pongo000 (97357) | about 2 years ago | (#42384553)

...until they actually make their archives downloadable to the general public. Their TOS expressly prohibits downloading from the site, which makes their archive useless to the masses. And don't tell me about Warrick...I'm well aware of it, as well as the fact that they haven't been accepting submissions for months.

Here's the relevant cite from the FAQ:

Can people download sites from the Wayback?

Our terms of use specify that users of the Wayback Machine are not to copy data from the collection. If there are special circumstances that you think the Archive should consider, please contact info at archive dot org.

Who makes their PetaBoxes? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42385373)

Used to be a spinoff company called Capricorn Technologies making the PetaBox, but their site is dead, and some indian outsourcing company is polluting the Wikipedia page about the PetaBox.

The new pictures seem to imply maybe AIC/Quanta hardware for the servers, so who really is the hardware maker behind PetaBox v4, which these donations supposedly will be used to pay for?

I'm in (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#42386407)

I donated $50. The Internet Archive does a lot of work with a minimal footprint. That's in my mind, worth supporting. Besides, they have a lot of neat content saved.
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