It’s a nightmare scenario for Yu-Gi-Oh fans who have to look up cards with convoluted descriptions. Over the weekend, the administrators of Yugipedia—which, as its name implies, is a wiki on all things Yu-Gi-Oh—announced that they had accidentally deleted half of the wikia’s primary database. “Yugipedia has suffered a catastrophic error,” they declared on Twitter.
“While working on some server issues, one of our server people noticed a storage volume connected to the server that appeared extraneous. After performing some checks on whether the storage was in use, it appeared not to be. To save server costs, the storage volume was accordingly removed,” read the FAQ page about what had happened to Yugipedia. “Unfortunately, we later discovered the volume was not configured normally, so our prior checks couldn’t detect that the volume actually was in use, and what we removed was the storage volume containing the site’s primary database.” This disconnection caused the cloud provider to reallocate the storage to other customers. Like many fan projects, the tragedy was a result of having limited resources. If the owners had been made of money, then there wouldn’t have been a reason to delete their storage volume.
So there you have it: One of Yugipedia’s owners accidentally deleted half of the database because they erroneously believed that its data container was empty. The last time that Yugipedia had backed up the data was on January 12, 2020 (they had been backing up the data on a daily basis, but skipped the storage that they assumed didn’t contain any data). So anything that was added to the database after that had been deleted. The administrator later clarified on Reddit that the images had survived, since they were hosted on a different server.
Yugipedia is an entirely separate database from the Yu-Gi-Oh Wiki, which is owned by Fandom. Five years ago, the fan community The YGOrganization and several prominent members of the Wikia community decided to split off from the Fandom-owned wiki and create Yugipedia. Fandom’s video advertisements had been unpopular, and the wiki did not allow contributors to add custom code to the pages. Some users also accused the Yu-Gi-Oh Wiki of “stealing” videos from the fan community.
The administrators of Yugipedia are currently working with archival websites to bring the wiki back. They’re also asking contributors to help by submitting Yugipedia pages from their browser cache. “You’ll be able to confirm all the data entries to be sent before anonymously sending them,” a Yugipedia admin wrote. “This tool is also open-source; there’s a link in the bottom-right corner, so feel free to confirm this yourself!”
Hopefully, they can get the full Yugipedia database back quickly.