This topic has been split into sections due to the number of graphics required.
Around Tue 16 June 2017, an entry went up on Facebook. It claimed that an Internet archive, the Wayback Machine (WM) had captured a page from CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre) showing that Madeleine was missing. The page captured is dated as 30 April 2007, when Madeleine disappeared on 3 May 2007. In summary, the CEOP page was 3 days too early.
After that, things got interesting.
The technical experts locked horns on whether this was real or an error. Non-technical people took views, whether well informed or not.
A poll on the Jill Havern forum showed that nearly half the people were lost in the techno-speak battleground, therefore I am choosing to write this post very deliberately in language that is as non-technical as I can make it.
Let me begin at the beginning.
The Internet Archive, aka the Wayback Machine (WM), is a fairly small, not for profit organisation based in California. It tries to act as an Internet ‘library’ by copying sites at various points in time. It does this by using automated ‘crawlers’ to look up sites automatically, given that this is much easier than having real people do it by hand.
You, personally, can go to a site and try to save a copy by hand. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. WM has the same sort of issues – some things copy and some things don’t.
I’d like now to swap to Q&A mode, because that allows me to take things easy step by easy step.
Q1. What happened?
The WM result for what is supposed to be 30 Apr 2007 looks like this.
It shows a date of 30 Apr 2007, but news stories from October 2007, suggesting something is broken.
A key point here is that it is showing a reference to Madeleine disappearing, some 3 days before she officially disappeared.
Q2. Why has none of this appeared on the news?
The story has appeared in many Internet forums and generated intense debate. It appears to be not worthy of column inches or airtime in major media outlets.
Q3. How could WM get the results wrong for a McCann page on 30 Apr 2007?
It is a CEOP page with a missing Madeleine reference 3 days before Madeleine disappeared.
At this stage, you have precisely two options.
Option 1. The WM is wrong, whether it is broken or otherwise.
Option 2. The WM is accurate, and CEOP knew Madeleine would go missing before she went missing.
Let me explore option 2 for a while, which is that CEOP had some sort of information on Madeleine’s disappearance 3 days before she disappeared.
This leads me to straight to conspiracy theory. The Internet is awash with comments that it means Madeleine was due to be killed, which it most certainly does not. If correct, it would mean CEOP was ready to put out a missing child post 3 days before she went missing.
So that would mean CEOP is involved in a conspiracy, as is the WM, a California based organisation, which is cleaning up this entry.
Option 1 is technical bug. Option 2 is global conspiracy. This may explain why major news sites are not reporting the incident. Or perhaps they are part of the conspiracy.
Please read the rest of this article before you decide.