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Big Revolution - Lost to the wind

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Welcome to Thursday's Big Revolution, and a special welcome to recent subscribers. Thanks for joining
 
December 13 · Issue #291 · View online
Big Revolution
Welcome to Thursday’s Big Revolution, and a special welcome to recent subscribers. Thanks for joining us!
Martin

Big things you need to know today
  • 87 government and defence-related organisations have been hit by a malware-based spying operation, McAfee has discovered.
  • Apple is planning to launch a ‘Netflix for magazines’ inside Apple News next year, according to Bloomberg. But publishers aren’t 100% sold on its merits.
The big thought
Struck down: the Infinity Blade series on iOS
Lost to the wind
I was never really that bothered about playing the Infinity Blade games on iOS… until I discovered that I now may never be able to.
Epic, best known as the company behind Fortnite, has withdrawn the three Infinity Blade titles from the App Store. The reason given? “It has become increasingly difficult for our team to support the Infinity Blade series at a level that meets our standards.”
TouchArcade has an article that sums up the feeling of fans of the series. Essentially, it’s ‘what the hell? Why?!’
Set aside Infinity Blade and my natural FOMO at losing my chance to play three games that were apparently very good. The bigger picture here is it’s a reminder of just how fragile digital products are.
Existing Infinity Blade players will still be able to re-download the games. But for anyone else, it’s like they’ve been wiped from existence.
If you want to play old Super Nintendo games that aren’t available digitally, you can always track down a physical cartridge and play it on new third-party hardware. If a physical album or movie is withdrawn from sale, the second hand market is similarly your friend.
With digital goods, when they’re gone, they’re gone. I suspect we’ll see more of this problem in the future as real gems that are only available on streaming platforms (Spotify, Netflix, YouTube, etc) are withdrawn, or the platforms shut down. And the original creators may have no motive to reissue them somewhere new. All that creative effort – lost forever.
In a world of abundant storage, it seems insane to consider that we may lose a huge chunk of human creative endeavour to the wind. Platforms and curators need to think carefully about longterm archiving. If they don’t, we’ll regret it in decades to come.
One big read
Electric scooters like Bird and Lime keep getting dumped in lakes and rivers. Electric scooters like Bird and Lime keep getting dumped in lakes and rivers.
Is vandalism and abuse of vehicles just an occupational hazard for the new breed of scooter and bike operators?
One big tweet
Dave Lee
The complexity of Google's subscription offers is baffling, or even just YouTube's. The appeal of Amazon Prime to so many is that it's all encompassing. Google should offer the same for all of its various services.
10:45 PM - 12 Dec 2018
Great idea. And they already have the Google One brand they could use for this.
That’s all for today...
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