MySpace says, “Hi, space!” after clearing off more than 50 million songs from 14 million artists in server migration failings.
Not only that, but all your cringey photos, videos and quotes of emotional song lyrics are gone too! Well, if you uploaded them between the launch of MySpace in 2003 and their server migrations in 2015 that is. If you posted those photos from the hen night and Katy Perry quotes in the past few years you can sleep easy; they’ll still be there in the morning, unless Myspace decide to do another server migration and deletes everything again.
For those that may not remember, seeing as MySpace hasn’t been at the forefront of anyone’s thoughts for at least 10 years, MySpace is/was a social media platform where you could customise your profile to show the world what you were about. Some people used it for networking, keeping up with their friends and following celebrity pages, but one of the main attractions was for musicians to try and get their names out there, leading to a huge amount of pictures and songs getting uploaded on a daily basis.
Surely you can recover all of those old songs and photos of your youth though, right? There’s no way a company holding on to the cherished memories of happier times would risk losing the data without a backup, right? Right? Well, of course they would. You wouldn’t be reading this blog post if they had cared enough.
What could they have done to avoid this? Backup backup backup! Three times, at least. It has been said that “data doesn’t exist unless it is backed up 3 times.”
I mean, that’s obviously not true, but it certainly isn’t as secure as possible without the data backup rule of three, otherwise known as the 3-2-1 backup. At least 3 copies of your data, 2 of which should be backups on different types of storage locally and at least 1 backup offsite.
Granted, the sheer volume of data that MySpace held could have made the process fairly expensive, but this could ultimately be the downfall of the social media giant that has been gradually hemorrhaging visitors and downsizing over the past 10 years. Will MySpace survive this PR hit? Only time will tell!
MySpace have given a couple of statements on this matter. Initially they commented that the lack of access was a technical issue that they were working on. After a few months they altered their response to: “As a result of a server migration project, any photos, videos, and audio files you uploaded more than three years ago may no longer be available on or from Myspace. We apologize for the inconvenience and suggest that you retain your back up copies.”
That last line reads more like, “Don’t trust us to look after your data, back it up yourself.” which is kind of fair enough, seeing as they aren’t a backup service. Also, it isn’t bad advice, although I wouldn’t recommend pushing blame onto users for not having data backed up. It’s still MySpace’s server migration and lack of backup that failed them and it will be hard to bring back trust in the service.
In any case, they have since changed up the message and simply say, “Due to a server migration, files were corrupted and unable to be transferred over to our updated site. There is no way to recover the lost data.”
Even a cursory glance towards Twitter and Reddit threads will show you how devastated some users are at this loss, despite most people not even realising everything has been missing for quite a long time now. I imagine it’s like the feeling you would get if you lost family photo albums. Sure, you might not look at them every day. Maybe you only think about them every couple of years, but it would be a big blow to know you could never see them again.
This whole debacle highlights two main things for us. One, for users, don’t just backup to the cloud. If the service is down or they lose your files, you are at their mercy. Two, for businesses, BACK UP YOUR DATA!