When she was considering taking Aesthe online, Fearless Leader said "It's always there. Years from now what you write will be out there for people to read." Fogey me was dubious and still is. Yesterday has done nothing to make me feel different.
The only records that stay online seem to be the ones you don't want to and can't erase- as I am still trying to remove a simple name from the fiction archive, which will not remove no matter what I'm told to do. The name is in a file somewhere and exists in a distinctive form and I just can't find it. And if I don't, when this woman goes job-hunting google will tell her employers that her name is on a m-m site. She has the even worse task of trying to remove an actual fic with her name on it from geocities. No one told you ten years ago Never put your real name on the net. Ah google, what hast thou wrought? In the present social climate down south, being an enthusiastic yaoi fan in the 90's is shaping up to be the same as joining the Communist party in the 30's- something someone will get you for 15 years down the line.
As for the blogs and ljs- well. Paper disintegrates too, of course, and one's own handwriting can be a pain to read. Still in time I may go back to the paper record. These things go in cycles, in the general population as well as personally. Right now words don't seem real unless (how ironic) they're on a screen and online where other people can read them and so validate their existence. But in a year or two things may have shifted back to the need for privacy and security- the pen, the book, the record no one is likely to see ever until I'm dead and quite indifferent to who reads it.
Mh- dead and indifferent. That's kind of odd, now I think about it, given how much the notion of 'what will people think of me when I'm gone?' has exercised the culture I live in and the people who wrote. 'O what a wounded name, Things standing thus unknown, shall live behind me' doesn't cut it much any more, does it? Alive, yes, one wants to be well thought of. Dead, what difference does it make? End of a tradition.