Ok, I’m going to call it now. I don’t know when it will happen, but I’m becoming convinced it will. I might have mentioned this idea in a previous entry, but I’m making this post stand-alone.
Do you have data in “the cloud”? The motherfucking “cloud”? The stupid term for Internet storage? The one where some idiot manager looked at the Visio diagram for wide area networks, represented by… a cloud, and called it “the cloud” and it stuck?
Anyway. You probably do. Your smartphone saves backup data to “the MF’n cloud.” You probably have Google Drive or OneDrive or DropBox or one of the many others. You may actually have online backups through Carbonite or its competitors. Surely you understand you are trusting these companies to stay in business as long as they have your stuff.
But, you’re not alone. Businesses are being strongly pitched to store their stuff in “the MF’n cloud”. Not only that, some businesses completely exist in this etheric realm – no tangible assets at all. Today, Microsoft sent me an email stating they had developed a utility to move your TFS projects from your local machines to “Visual Studio Online” – a goddamn cloud for code. (TFS is a tool for storing and keeping track of source code.)
Now hold on one minute here. Microsoft wants me to take all my business’s code, the stuff that RUNS my business, and put it on their servers. Oh, I’m not worried about security. Seriously, I’m not. There is one scenario I predict is going to happen, and it may happen to any one of these companies that deal in virtual, rented storage.
On that fateful day, there will be a news story about how CloudCo has defaulted on a financial obligation. Then there is a flurry of more “investigative” news stories as people realize, “Oh shit, they’ve been insolvent for a really long time, although the executives have made tons of the money and are saying they had none of the idea this was happening. How could we be such stupid Americans? Is YouTube still up?” No, this isn’t like the banks. This is different.
Banks may have your money, but you can replace that with other money, especially with money you get from FDIC guarantees. Cloud companies have your data. Your pictures, your documents, your emails, your contacts, your digital life. There’s no FDIC guarantee on that. It cannot be replaced. Do you see the difference here?
Ok, back to that day. CloudCo, says, “Sorry for your bad fortune, we’re going to have to close up.” Government officials will immediately say “My pictures!” and will create something that sounds impressive, like injunction, that effectively says, “we’ll make people provide CloudCo service for free until everyone can get all their data off their servers.” Problem is, CloudCo worked very hard to get a lot of data. Too much data to move. Too much data for a company to completely revamp its processes to use another provider. So much data that CloudCo became “too big to fail”. Oh wait, this is just like the banks. It’s actually more insidious.
I’m saying it’s going to happen. I have no idea when or to whom it will happen, but it’s gonna happen. And if you really wanna get in on this, you can do it yourself. Start a cloud company. It will be like minting money. And when it all falls apart, you won’t even see a day in jail. I can promise that, because America loves entrepreneurs. Especially ones that have a plan, even if that plan is to take the money and run.