Online Evictions

In a previous post (Disturbances in the cloud) I described that using services in the cloud (or more down to earth: on the Internet) introduces more risks then most users imagine. A new examples seems to be the (free) AOL Hometown service for site hosting. It was shut down on Oct. 31, 2008 leaving all users behind with no access to their own content. Some say they had a 4 week notice but the support forums seem to at least indicate not everyone got it. This was the only “official” notice of the imminent shutdown, a small blog entry.

More information can be found here.

So, how are you doing? Let’s take a common example: online mail services like Live Mail or Google Mail. How many of you have local backups they can access if those services ever shut down or change their terms of use?