[Editor’s Note: Forever is a gold-sponsor of the upcoming RootsTech conference in Salt Lake City 3-6 February 2016. Founder and CEO Glen Meakem shares his thoughts on the concept of “permanence” when it comes to selecting a cloud storage or photo sharing site for your genealogy and family history data.]
This coming week, my team and I will travel to Salt Lake City, Utah to participate in RootsTech, 2016, the largest family history conference in the world. Forever is also the Gold Sponsor of the event. We will gather with a community of genealogists, family historians, moms, and others who embrace the mission of “celebrating families across generations.”
Like many fellow baby boomers, my wife, Diane, and I have accumulated a treasure trove of valuable family memories that feature the stories of our grandparents, our parents, and our five wonderful children. I believe that saving, and sharing these important memories with family, friends, and future generations is really important. So, in the spring of 2012, I set out to find a comprehensive set of memory-keeping tools and services that would allow me to protect my family stories, and make sure they were accessible in the cloud for many, many years to come.
What I discovered was shocking! The well-known cloud storage and photo sharing sites that so many people rely on to save their precious content have no long-term plan for protecting memories.
That’s why I started Forever, which is the only guaranteed online media storage and sharing service. My team and I are bringing to market a complete memory-keeping solution to help genealogists and family historians collect, curate, and celebrate their memories now and for generations. No one else is focused on permanence. No one else has a perpetual plan for your memories. No one else is doing what we do.
Comparing Amazon Cloud Drive with Forever
“If you no longer have a Service Plan or exceed your Service Plan’s storage limit, including by downgrading or not renewing your Service Plan or no longer qualifying for an Additional Benefit, we may delete or restrict access to Your Files.”
How long does Amazon give you to get “Your Files” before deleting them? According to Amazon’s “Help & Customer Service” page, “After 90 days, your Cloud Drive account will be deactivated and your content will be permanently deleted.”
Got that? The only thing permanent about Amazon Cloud Drive is the permanent deletion of your content once you stop paying for the service.
It’s exactly the opposite with Forever. We are driven by the belief that family stories should never be lost, and provide a fundamentally different experience. GeneaBloggers Founder, Thomass MacEntee, reported earlier this week that in our Terms of Service, we provide a patent-pending contractual guarantee to each and every permanent member to preserve their precious content for their lifetime plus 100 years.
Forever guarantees that Content will be preserved and accessible (using then current formats and supported devices based on FOREVER’s best judgment and assessment of future technology) in your Forever Guaranteed Permanent Account for the lifetime of the Guaranteed Member and 100 years thereafter (‘Guarantee Period’).
How do we credibly support our patent-pending Forever Guarantee? With the Forever Guarantee Fund, which is a permanent investment fund that generates ongoing returns used to preserve Guaranteed Permanent Accounts and to fund Forever’s overall business. These funds are fully restricted, which means we can only withdraw a very small amount from the Fund each year, and the money withdrawn must be used to continue the preservation of your Guaranteed Storage. In this way, Forever is able to ensure long-term preservation, and eliminate risks associated with other cloud storage businesses.
While we offer many important products and services for memory keeping, Guaranteed Permanent Shareable Storage is the core of our business. It gives our customers peace of mind and a tremendous feeling of security knowing that their memories are being saved for their lifetimes plus one hundred years, with a goal of many generations beyond.
The fact is, Amazon Cloud Drive may be a useful temporary back up for your content, but it is NOT a photo preservation site. It is not a service that protects life stories and passes them on to future generations. That’s simply not the service that Amazon offers. In fact, Amazon rejects permanence.
If you want a temporary place to back up your documents, then Amazon may work for you. But if you are like me, and want long-term photo and document protection, then come home to Forever.
I’ll be writing more in the very near future on long-term photo preservation and problems with other popular photo-sharing sites in what will be a multi-part blog series published at the Forever blog. Until then, come see me and Forever’s booth (#415) at RootsTech, 2016. I can’t wait to meet you.