FAQ

How do you keep my Story Forever?
Why is storing my Story with you safer than saving it to my own computer or burning it on disks for my Family members?
Do I have to publish my Story? I have private things I don’t wish to share right away.
What if someone talks about me in a Story that I feel is defamatory?
What technologies do you use to ensure my Story is safe from hackers and the like?
What technologies do you use to ensure my Story is kept forever?
How do you elect your Board members?
Where does the Foundation get its money from to ensure that it will last Forever?
How do I transfer my Story, and what happens to my Legacy when I die?
How do I find a website in Story of My Life?
How do I know that the Foundation itself will exist forever?
What is the relationship between the Foundation and Eravita, Inc.?

How do you keep my Story Forever?
Our Forever Promise to you is to provide a means by which your Story can be embodied in digital format and preserved: FOREVER. Every Story created online at Story of My Life is entrusted for safe-keeping by the Story of My Life Foundation™ a not-for-profit organization established for the eternal preservation, maintenance, and guaranteed access to Stories. Part of the proceeds from every created Story are contributed directly to the Foundation in an endowment fund to cover hosting, storage, and retrieval costs in perpetuity. The Foundation is entrusted with using the best security and long term data storage technologies available.
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Why is storing my Story with you safer than saving it to my own computer or burning it on disks for my Family members?
There are 2 critical elements to this answer. The first and most obvious is that all those things can be destroyed, lost, become obsolete or outmoded, with destruction and loss of data being the worst case scenarios. Our redundant server locations back up all the data while they also mirror each other, so if anything happens to one there is another just like it at a completely different location. If something happens to both, there is an offsite back-up that has recorded data so nothing is lost. The second element to this is less about the physical data and more about your personal footprint on this earth. It’s lovely to leave a Story, journal, book, DVD, blog, movie, memorial tribute or the like behind. But what happens in 100, 200, 600 years? Who will be reading this information if it’s in limited availability and to a narrowing related audience? Even famous people in our current day may have some trouble getting traction decades from now. So our solution is to put Stories online, but just as importantly, to show how the Stories connect through your Family, Friends, Groups and network them together time immemorial as the networks grow.
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Do I have to publish my Story? I have private things I don’t wish to share right away.
Your Story can be released to the public immediately, you can set Customized Access Rights that only allow certain people when they are logged into the Story of My Life system to have access, or you may choose to release your Story in whole or in parts at a future date. When creating your Story, there are several options to allow only certain people to read and access it, or you may keep it private (hidden where no one can see it) until you have set a Future Release Date.
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What if someone talks about me in a Story that I feel is defamatory?
If someone has a vastly different “interpretation” of something than you do, you may respond by a) telling your own Story b) commenting on this person’s Story or c) contact Eravita if you feel the information is truly libelous or slanderous [for audio files]. Remember though, that memories are not always accurate and this website is more about someone telling the Story of his or her Life as (s)he remembers it, which may not always be as precise as a recorded version.
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What technologies do you use to ensure my Story is safe from hackers and the like?
We have several ways in which we use the latest technologies to keep your data safe. These include, but are not limited to the following measures: 1) we encrypt files that are not released yet using a high standard of encryption; 2) we never give direct access to the files directly, they are streamed through and from the server only; 3) in the case of audio and video files, we use special plugin authorization so that no one can play the file without permission; 4) the security is done on a remote server from where the user can only access using http protocol and that is protected by the best firewalls; and finally 5) our data is stored in two different mirrored locations run by a top 10 (in the world) state of the art hosting company that uses best practices to ensure the security of data.
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What technologies do you use to ensure my Story is kept forever?
Technology is used to ensure the data is kept forever. Technology changes, sometimes very rapidly. The Foundation is charged with keeping up with latest technologies in order to make sure that the data is both maintained forever and accessible forever. There are two main considerations: the first is deterioration of the physical body on which the data is stored (lasers, tapes, DVDs etc) and the second is accessibility and file type support in the future. The Foundation will be transferring older files to newer technologies for one or both reason: because the physical storage unit may be approaching the end of its shelf life, and/or the technology becomes outmoded (8 track tapes anyone?) and current users cannot access it through modern computer tools. For example, mp3 files might not be supported 50 years from now. That media might be obsolete. The Foundation will migrate outdated files to new technologies respecting the compression ratio and quality. The Foundation must also consistently and constantly replace old hardware and storage and must update digital files in order that they are accessible. If we know that a meteor, for example, is scheduled to wipe out the earth in 10 years, the Foundation is responsible for shooting a time capsule into space to preserve them.
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How do you elect your Board members?
Our Board members are selected for their professional experience in areas that are important to the mission of the Foundation, as well as having exhibited a passion for Story telling, genealogy, ancestry, and social networking. Our Board members serve terms of 1, 2 or 3 years and are elected by the other Board members when their rotation is completed.
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Where does the Foundation get its money from to ensure that it will last Forever?
We have build a complex algorithm that is recalculated several times per year that adds 100 years to today’s current date and calculates on costs based at that time for how much it would cost to store this data, at present day costs, for the next 100 years. Every day the 100 years extends one day further out, so the algorithm is constantly being adjusted for cost variables. These costs include (but are not limited to): hardware costs, bandwidth, electricity, staff to operate and maintain, storage and offsite back-up mechanisms, redundancy in servers and remove locations of mirrored data, the latest in security techniques and any other costs that may be associated with keeping the data Forever.
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How do I transfer my Story, and what happens to my Legacy when I die?
When you cease to exist (which we hope you live long and prosper!), but an eventual fate that currently will befall us all, your Story will be “set” as it is and be permanent forever. You may set a Guardian who guards your Story and may update it. How will we know if you are indeed departed and that your Story should be frozen? For the beta version, we will rely on your Guardians to tell us this information and we will verify that this subject matter is true. We will note that when there is more than six months of inactivity on your website, we will first attempt to contact you. If that is unsuccessful, we will start attempting, in sequential order, to contact your Guardians until we reach one and are able to verify the status. If we are unable to reach any Guardian, after one year of continual non-activity, your Story will be assumed to frozen as is, forever.
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How do I find a website in Story of My Life?
You can do a quick search for someone by their Name or Story ID, or you can do an extensive search based on any number of characteristics or information you may have about someone, including old addresses, names, etc. Or you may search for people with similar interests, likes, hobbies, matching home towns or locations, previous employers or affiliated organizations. Or just read random Stories of people whom you find interesting.
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How do I know that the Foundation itself will exist forever?
If anything happens to the Foundation, based on U.S. IRS tax exempt regulations, the Company and the Foundation’s Board are bound by a legal contract to work together to find another repository for the data so that it remains accessible, usually through another not-for-profit institution. The Foundation is a separate entity with a separate Board of Directors who maintain and upkeep a copy of all Forever Space data on its own servers and maintain accessibility to your Story forever. You may designate any part, or all, of your Story to be “Forever Space” by purchasing the equivalent amount of Space. Part of each proceeds designated towards Forever Space is put into an endowment fund that earns interest and ensures the Foundation’s future. The Foundation will also accept its own contributions directly from people who have an active interest in ensuring the purpose of the Foundation exists in perpetuity.
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What is the relationship between the Foundation and Eravita, Inc.?
The Story of My Life Foundation is a separate, 501(c)(3) U.S. not for profit organization. Eravita Incorporated is a company that built the current Story of My Life Website. The Board members are separate with the exception of the representative of Eravita, and has its own money which is puts into an endowment in order to ensure the Stories are kept accessible and secure forever. There are several contracts between the Foundation and Eravita, all created by lots and lots of lawyers, and built in mission statements regarding their purposes and existence, to ensure that should anything happen to either entity, both are obligated by their Charters to ensure that another solution, partner or site is designed and a solution found to ensure the longevity of the Stories.

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