The Onion | Infograph
The Onion has a gem amongst a minor satire of Google: "Finally get around to making back-up disks of everything."
I recently browsed a Slashdot thread on CD-R longevity. It was quick reading -- Slashdot is a shadow of its former self. One theme did emerge -- the posters, a tech savvy bunch, were struggling with backup.
Imagine then, how well 97% of the population does with backup, particularly with digital photos. No wonder the best advice given to most digital photo hobbyists is to print what they like. Odds are, somewhere in the next twenty years, some digital accident will obliterate the rest. (My favorite -- get mixed up in some migration and accidentally delete a photo collection.)
The public needs invisible offsite backup. Google has the expertise and infrastructure to provide offsite backup for the world. They have the engineers to build the UI. They have the money to buy or lease the patents. What they lack is a public willing to pay $25/GB/year for the service. I'd pay the $300 or so I need, but few others would. Yet. After enough have lost their most beloved images, they may be willing to pay.