Secrets of Survival

H2K2 was a while ago, but I just stumbled across some notes I jotted down during John Young's presentation. Young, aka "jya," runs Cryptome, one of the 'Net's great archives -- all stuff that someone, somewhere, doesn't want you to see.

Most of the presentation was unremarkable, but Young's trick to not getting shut down bears repeating. As he explained, Cryptome is never the only site hosting any given document. No one has a strong incentive to take Cryptome down, because doing so won't stop the bleeding. Young even hinted that there have been times when he has forwarded documents around before posting them, with precisely this goal in mind.

A few thoughts:

  • Lots of people understand this principle in the real world; comparatively few remember that it also applies online.
  • Single point of failure, dude. It's the same idea.
  • There may come a day when someone finds it worth taking Cryptome down, not to put a cat back in the bag, but as a public example . . .
  • I always thought it was pronounced "Crypto-me," but no, it's actually "Cryp-tome," which makes more sense.