A few months ago Yahoo announced that they were closing the once popular free webhost Geocities.
How long do I have to decide what to do with my site?
Not long! On October 26, 2009, your GeoCities site will no longer appear on the Web, and you will no longer be able to access your GeoCities account and files. If you think you might want to keep your site files or move your site to another provider, please download your files now.
After October 26, your GeoCities files will be deleted from our servers, and will not be recoverable.
I started the first version of this site on Geopages, as it was then, way back in 1995 before moving it to captain.custard.org (where half of it still is) and the finally to league.jmkprime.org. I’m rather fond of the old homestead (as they called their sites in the old days). Sure the place had become a bit run down over the years and it obviously wasn’t making them much money, but it was one of the first places where people could maintain a real permanent presence online and remains an important milestone along the road to the blogosphere, myspace, facebook, and all the rest.
I can understand Yahoo’s decision to close Geocities, but there is still a lot of content on there and it will all vanish from the internet come October 2009. Many sites other sutes are hosted at short term locations – webspace from ISPs or from Universities that gets deleted when contracts expire or people graduate. I’ve lost count of the some of the fine old homepages out there that have vanished once the author graduated. However there is a lifeline for this material- the Internet Archive. They are a non-profile organisation dedicated to preserving material posted on the Internet. The Archive has copies of my own site from 1999 and 2000, but it is not necessairly complete.
There are also projects like Archive Team, but this is something of a race against time and is something that we should leave to the tech nerds or specialists. If there is a Geocities site that you want preserved you need to go to:
to check whether its already been indexed or to request that it is included in the index. So check your old bookmark files for any Geocities links and request the Archive index those that it doesn’t already include.