Words of wisdom from Ethan Zuckerman.

Asynchronous digital media is nearly immortal. I got a clear illustration of this a few months ago when Google started indexing Usenet. Do a search for my old Tripod email address in the Usenet archives on Google Groups and I can find Usenet posts from over a decade ago. (They’re not as terrifying as I would have feared. Evidently spam-fighters really, really liked us…) They don’t seem to have any of my posts from college… but that’s not a luxury contemporary college students will have – by default, every dumb thing you post online will live forever, indexed in Google and stored on archive.org forever.

I would go further. Every dumb thing you do with a computer is recorded forever. It may not be easily accessible, but it can haunt you. Be wary.

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