I occasionally find myself accused of being overly critical of cloud services. Which I am not - per se. My critique is not about the technology and its undeniable potential, but about the terms at which it is provided …and the prevailing silence with which these are commonly accepted.
The story of a blog of 14 years deleted unannounced (by “don’t do evil” Google) is not so much a warning about centralised technology as such, but about the terms nobody reads and that grant corporations unlimited power over people’s intellectual property.
What is far more disturbing than the transgressive work of Dennis Cooper is the cold reality of technological progress. The idea of a cloud benevolently storing our personal information, our work, our photos, our music, so much of our lives, is also really nice, but as users, we have no control over the cloud.
In order to create a truly human-centred internet, we have a long way to go as long as all the apparent “freedom” provided by mainstream online services is in fact merely a prison.
PS: If you are serious about retaining ownership and control over your digital creations, go indieweb - some great workshop camps coming up this fall!