Evan Ratliff knows how to pull a good disappearing act. For the August issue of Wired Magazine, Ratliff outlined the best way to literally disappear, citing the case of Matthew Alan Sheppard, a health and safety manager who faked his own death for insurance money, as a way to highlight the impossible possibilities of trading in an old identity. The digital age, with Google and social networking, makes it almost impossible to be completely fingerprint-free, but it also means its easier to create fake identities, or hack into someone else's. So Evan Ratlff hatched a plan.
His friends at Wired would provide the publicity, but he would do the hard work. He has volunteered all of his information: his name, height, weight, Twitter account, e-mail addresses, even his likes and interests. Then, for one month, from August 15 to September 15, he will disappear.
Ratliff lives in San Francisco and has given the magazine full access to his debit card information, which has tracked purchases like buying goods at Best Buy or a money transfer from checking into savings. Everything is there for the savvy spy to use, and the lucky investigator will get five thousand dollars and an interview in Wired.
Is it possible to find a man in 30 days by only knowing his digital identity and the basic facts about him? In Ratliff's piece 'Gone Forever: What Does It Take to Really Disappear,' he mentions that people get sloppy. Even pre-paid phones, hidden IP addresses, and an erasure of self doesn't stop the impulse to monitor the chase or contact loved ones. So for those in the pursuit, stay vigilant. Ratliff doesn't have anything to lose besides a bet, so a misstep could be your ticket to five grand. [From: Wired.com]
Elle Girl In April 2006, Elle Girl's print edition was closed down, but the Web site lives on at ellegirl.com.
CosmoGirl Though it will be folded into Seventeen magazine, the teen version of Cosmopolitan will publish its last print issue in December 2008. It will live on at CosmoGirl.com.
Christian Science Monitor Founded in 1908 by Mary Baker Eddy, this venerable paper will move all its daily content to the Web starting in 2009, though it will still publish a weekly print version.
Radar Magazine Was it too snarky for its own good? We'll never know, but this modern-day successor to '80s-era Spy magazine shut down in October. AMI, owner of the National Enquirer, bought RadarOnline.com, however, which will focus on celebrity gossip a la TMZ.com.
US News and World Report Once a serious competitor to Time and Newsweek, US News and World Report is now best known for its College guides, which it will continue to publish. The weekly newsmagazine, however, will be turned into a monthly, and all daily operations are moving to the Web at usnews.com.