It's been quite some time since I've written about Linden Lab and Second Life because well, since we left there I haven't much looked back. However the experience of a merchant there, Kakia Designs, echoed so much our group experience and the failure of proper response from LL that I felt it warranted note.
The blog post from this merchant is listed here. Members who were with us before we moved to Inworldz will likely recognize the policies and attitudes. Kakia's blog is most enlightening.
FAILURE TO ARCHIVE
Archiving customer data is essential. Either the company should archive such data or allow the customer to do so.
When it comes to VR grids such as Second Life, Inworldz, OSgrid or any other grid:
* Avatars should have an inventory backup file in case something happens to the main file.
* Regions should have the ability for permanent backup.
There is too much work and expense involved in both avatars and regions to be lost by either a data glitch or because a region has to be temporarily shut down. Archival process is a long-established standard of the computer industry. We spend far too much time and money creating these regions and our avatars to have those destroyed without any existing archives. Had Linden Lab kept avatar archival files... they wouldn't have lost Kakia as a customer. If a company "can't" keep archival files, they should provide customers an encrypted way to do so, in a method that can be restored in an emergency. Yes, it needs to be done in a manner that can't be "gamed" by the customer, but it needs to be done. Failure to do so results in the experience of Kakia as stated in the owner's blog.
Archives are essential. It's amazing that after all these years Linden Lab still hasn't recognized that reality.