Tuesday, 1 January 2013

2012 In The Rear-View Mirror

The Scary Disease Girl, Maryn McKenna, will have been encountered before by regular readers, ends her year with a list of her most popular blogs.

2012 In The Rear-View Mirror: What You Liked
BY MARYN MCKENNA 01.01.138:30 AM - You can read the blog here.

The number one takes her back to the UK, where she spent part of her childhood, and specifically to Scotland and a lovely story, well known to most of us through TV.

But we probably under estimated the reaction in the USA and elsewhere from readers.

She tells us what happened and the outcome. In the process, she records the captured infamous first official response to this little girl's activities, and its highly amended version on the same url. You can read them by following her clearly marked trail.

Web sites do get altered and removed, of course, as part of an inevitable process. Most alterations are perfectly proper and reasonable.

The writer was caught very badly by the Murdoch media, publishing and then removing all trace of a story, very quickly, back in 2000. But it is in the printed version, in the National Repositories, which saved his skin.

As a result, if we think something is looking doubtful or significant, and want to comment or retain, a copy is taken for our own protection and removed beyond the realm. That's tens of thousands of pages over the years. Most will never see the light of day again, but some now look like historical gems.

Government, officialdom and others seemed to think they could publish doubtful material to create disinformation, even accurate information, and remove it at their whim.

But, it does look bad when they get rumbled, maybe years later.

You can't just be sure to have lost a file you published on the WWW, even if you have removed or changed it on the same url. The practice, if doubtful, is often more damaging than leaving it there.

The internet changes everything, and congratulations to the little girl and her justifiably proud parents.

A Happy New Year to you all.