What is Paleoweb?
Paleoweb is a project aimed at collecting representative websites for the future generations to be able to navigate the early web. Paleo stands for old in Greek.
Why should I let my old website enter into the Paleoweb project instead of simply let my domain expire and my website vanish from the Internet?
In frequent cases, website author don't understand that even if their website is in a deprecated state, it might provide the future generations with valuable content, past experiences, and many more unpredictable future uses.
Another response stands in 3 words: avoid domain parking. If you don't want to renew your domain, your domain won't be likely to vanish because there will be a so called domainer to catch it, and try to make money by setting up a parking page behind the domain. The Websites linking to your old website will drive visitors waiting to find your website, landing now to a very deceptive parking page.
The domainer converts into cash the popularity that you gained over the years, building your website. Doing so, they will get money until the final state where all the popularity has been consumed by their bad behavior.
Where are the websites coming from?
We have developed tools to monitor websites that are supposed to vanish, and try to alert their authors, and convince them to let their website enter the museum.
The authors willing to submit their website to enter in the Paleoweb museum is another source of websites. Promote this project will help us significantly to gain new websites into the collection.
What is the problem with parking pages?
Visit the StopDomainParking.org website to understand why parking pages severely offense the Internet ecosystem
I completely lost my website (for example due to a disk crash). Is it an issue to enter the paleoweb project?
No. We partly use recent research work done by Frank McCown to rebuild a frozen state from the website from different cache sources.
What is the difference between Archive.org and Paleoweb.org?
The great and popular Archive.org project keeps time snapshots from a very large number of websites. Thus, if you developed several versions of your website, the archive can take you back to an older version.
But the key point is that they consider that the domain holder is somehow the owner of content, or at least can decide whether or not the older versions are visible or hidden on the Archive.org website (through the Robots.txt configuration). Domainers, because they don't care about others work, will most probably block the older versions with their parking page.
The second difference is that even in the good case, (1) the older website from the Archive.org won't be anymore indexed by the search engine, and (2) the external links from other websites to the old website will all be broken. Thus, in the best case, the website will only be visible to those who know this website to previously exist, and are savvy enough to visit the Archive.org website. This is not a weakness of the Archive.org but an approach the traditionnal model of an archive.
What is the added value of Paleoweb to the Internet?
The positive contribution of Paleoweb concerns different aspects, and can be listed as follow
- avoid loss of Internet data (websites) and increase of pending links
- avoid deceptive user experience (parking page visitor)
- preserve the most interesting part of the web for the future generations
- increase the mean quality of long tail websites by the additionnal pages
What kinds of websites are eligible to this museum?
Any website that has been popular for a good reason and that its author doesn't want to handle longer, possibly whether because the website doesn't meet people today's needs, or is more or less deprecated, or abandoned, or archived.
My site is going on further development. May you still be interested?
No. the Paleoweb project only focus on deprecated websites.
How popular should the website be?
We focus on websites with at least a moderate popularity. With a thumb, the website could have links from about 50+ other websites. Some good natural links are better than numerous links, and is the best metric to estimate a website, through the interest of others for it.
As a conclusion, we consider the Internet ecosystem to be the best to eventually decide if a website is worthy of inclusion.
My website earns some money. Is it a good point?
For you, sure! You should then either keep your website or sell it through a marketplace to a new owner willing to develop it further. We are interested in websites that are in deprecated state and having no significant income or none at all. The limit of an income that is considered as non significant is approximatively the recurring costs (domain name, hosting).
What will happen with my website if it enters the Paleoweb project?
1. Your website will be hosted in a frozen version, in other words the visitors will be able to navigate the existing content, but any action willing to modify the data of the website (such as adding a comment if the website was a blog) will be desactivated. The visitors will be clearly notified of the state of the website to avoid any deceptive experience. Any ad of any kind will be removed if any.
2. Your website will be linked from the Paleoweb from a dedicated page, with informative content about the history of the website and its author.
These pages from paleoweb.org with their related websites constitute the museum of Paleoweb.
See the submission page for more detailled information about this subject.
I accidentally lost my domain and found it on the Paleoweb website. Can I get it back?
Paleoweb has a the greatest respect for the work of other and will therefore give the ownership back to the previous owner. We will just check your identity and ask to recover only what we paid to buy the domain. In this case, a short testimonial on the Paleoweb website and/or a link to Paleoweb is much appreciated.
I want my old website enters your museum. How do we proceed?
First, you have to choose between a standard sale or an escrow for the domain and website, the latter case being preferred for larger websites. See the submission page for more detailled information about this subject.
Will I have to pay for recurent costs (hosting, renew) or any other cost?
No, all costs are supported by the Paleoweb project
How is Paleoweb funded?
Paleoweb is a privately funded project. To generate sufficient income to enable this project to grow, we implemented an original and non intrusive way that is very similar to a classical museum: get visitors to discover the art collection, and monetize their visit. To this aim, we add to each website a long tail mashup showing web2.0 resources in same topic. Some advertisement blocks (non annoying text ads from Adsense) within these additional pages are the unique source of revenue.
Visitors, who want either support the museum might consider to link Paleoweb.
Is Paleoweb a non profit project?
Paleoweb aims to be a non profit project, dedicating a large amount of the revenues from its monetization approach to get more websites into its museum. The choice to operate with a limited company as to be understood as the choice of easyness. Another choice would have to start a non profit organization and raise money to make the project grow.
But as the project will have reach a significant size, Paleoweb should continue as a non profit organization, or integrate an existing one. This has to be compared as a private collector making a donation to an existing museum.
Is it possible that websites from the Paleoweb museum would quit the collection?
The websites within this museum are either owned by or attributed to Paleoweb (See Submission page). In the latter case, which won't be the most frequent, the website owner can get his website out of the museum. For this Paleoweb prefers to acquire websites, to be sure that this part of the collection will be kept in the museum.
Paleoweb contributes to preserve the Web. But could Paleoweb one day simply vanish?
No, it couldn't. The Paleoweb project and its entire website collection (domain information, website data, and all the developed software to maintain the project) are stored within a digital escrow, with regular updates. A non profit organization will act as a recipient of this digital escrow to continue the project in case where its founder couldn't operate longer.
How did you get this idea?
I was myself concerned by such a question, to have an old script and database driven website with past reputation, and (1) willing to preserve it (2) without the hassle to cope with all the monitoring and server migration issues of a live website. After having had the idea, I googled the Internet and found out a forum thread with someone discussing the idea in 2004
I could not find the answer to my question on this FAQ
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