Author Topic: It looks as if the Chronicle of Higher Ed has shut down the Forum archives...  (Read 587 times)

mamselle

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....or does someone else know differently?

I sort of thought they were going to give us a warning; is there someone new on board who doesn't understand, or...???

All those painstaking crossreferences, gone...

Grrrrrrmmmmmmm......

M.
Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.

Reprove not a scorner, lest they hate thee: rebuke the wise, and they will love thee.

Give instruction to the wise, and they will be yet wiser: teach the just, and they will increase in learning.

dismalist

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No, I noticed last night.
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smallcleanrat

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Does that mean deleted forever?

If I had known that was going to happen, I would have made copies of my favorite discussions....

Any way we can get archive access again?

Parasaurolophus

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Yes, they've completely killed the archived copies, and they're gone forever (ish: see below). The Internet Archive, which was supposed to keep 'em all, looks like it's only kept the index.

Happily, the CHE has reached out to eigen about transferring a full copy of the database from the old forum. I don't really have anything to report (eigen's the one most in the know, here), except that since yesterday we've (eigen, the mods) been talking about what to do about it, and what to do (slash what we can do) with a copy of the database, if we take it.
I know it's a genus.

eigen

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I'm working with one of the webmasters over there. It does indeed look like jobs changed hands and someone didn't pass on any of the previous conversations.

Apparently, they *thought* they had everything archived via the Internet Archive. They'd requested the site be archived before taking it offline. It seems that what happened was only the indexes were archived and not the actual posts- but it's also possible that the archive just hasn't finished processing/updating yet. I'm thinking this latter option is less likely.

I've requested a copy of the database, but I'm not sure what I can actually do with it. It won't integrate into the current forums. We might be able to set up another website with a shadow copy of the old forums, or I may be able to extract single threads. That may also take someone far more experienced with databases than I am to handle.

I'll try to keep you all updated as I learn anything.

I will note that we now have a (permanent) listing directing traffic from the CHE to come here, so that may also slowly keep increasing our member pool.

spork

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Actually I'm glad the old CHE archive is gone. Times change. I doubt much if anything that was written as far back as 2006 is of practical use, and I don't think anyone will ever want to mine the content as part of an academic research project on the culture of academia.

Wahoo Redux

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Killing the CHE fora has been good for IHE circulation, at least here.  Can't believe it was a good business decision on CHE's part.

smallcleanrat

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There were good threads in the Balancing Work and Life and Health Issues categories that I would hardly consider out-of-date.

And the favorite emails and bang your head threads could be pretty entertaining.

And I feel said when I think about the possibility of all those HOF posts being gone forever.

Maybe the old fora aren’t a major part of history, but they are an important piece of *my* history. CHE Forum reading was a significant portion of my online activity since 2012. I’m sentimental about it.

mamselle

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Ditto here.

I found out because I went back to re-read something I'd remembered and liked.

A large part of my learning is tied up in those posts.

Thanks for trying to get them back!

If there's any way to help, please make it known.

M.
Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.

Reprove not a scorner, lest they hate thee: rebuke the wise, and they will love thee.

Give instruction to the wise, and they will be yet wiser: teach the just, and they will increase in learning.

Anselm

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I just found this out a few minutes ago while doing some random internet search and then I found a link to the CHE Fora which lead me to the announcement that it was gone.   Google still has some content stored in its cache but I am not sure how long they hold onto that.  I get my most useful advice from here and in the past from the old forum.  I hate to see anything disappear.  I fear that we are headed for a new dark age with digital storage of information.
 
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ergative

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Actually I'm glad the old CHE archive is gone. Times change. I doubt much if anything that was written as far back as 2006 is of practical use, and I don't think anyone will ever want to mine the content as part of an academic research project on the culture of academia.

What about the wonderful visitor who was consulting us to write a werewolves-in-academia novel? That was vital source material for future literary historians.

glowdart

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I have to say I’m not sad. I managed to get one of my socks deleted because I still had email access, but the others can now be gone as well.

downer

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I'm working with one of the webmasters over there. It does indeed look like jobs changed hands and someone didn't pass on any of the previous conversations.

Apparently, they *thought* they had everything archived via the Internet Archive. They'd requested the site be archived before taking it offline. It seems that what happened was only the indexes were archived and not the actual posts- but it's also possible that the archive just hasn't finished processing/updating yet. I'm thinking this latter option is less likely.


Seems like a very familiar IT story, with staff coming and going, and policies and assurances not well implemented. I always get nervous during transitions for websites and domains I work on that a lot of old stuff will be screwed up or lost.

After enough experiences of that happening, I have learned to take a 'live in the present moment' attitude and not worry so much about the past and old web pages.

Weirdly though, one school still has my home page up from 23 years ago.
"Change takes courage." Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

pepsi_alum

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I wonder if the disappearance had anything to do with the data breach earlier this year at The Chronicle.

I have mixed feelings about the archives being gone. On the one hand, I'll miss the memories of the community we had there from 2006-2019. On the other hand, I wish in retrospect that I hadn't posted so much personal stuff there and I'm relieved that those posts are no longer publicly visible. So it goes.

dr_codex

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I lurked, socked, and posted on the CHE for well over a decade. Part of me is outraged at the casual erasure of years of unpaid contributions. Part of me is unsurprised.

Several years ago, the Internet Archive started buying up hard copies of books. Their intuition is that the first thing to go, when all starts to go, is the power grid needed to run all of the servers. They are right. Any digital backup is fragile. It will, in short time, become like all the financial services systems, now relying on an aging population of people who know how to program in COBOL to survive.

sic transit gloria mundi, O CHE Fora!
back to the books.