Until the End of the Internet

On software and services built to last

Illustration by Nate Otto.

At Basecamp we think a lot about the long-term. The company has been around since 1999, the product since 2004, and we even offer our employees benefits for the long run that put their health and long-term happiness before maximum productivity.

It was with this kind of long-term thinking that we launched the first major new version of Basecamp (in 2012) as a brand new product rather than foisting it on everyone as an upgrade. 2004’s Basecamp Classic (as it’s now known) continues to work just as it always has and we’re happy for customers who prefer that version to keep using it as long as they’d like. Change is hard. Particularly when you’ve got deadlines, clients, and work to be done. Suddenly waking up to a completely new version of any software can be so disruptive that some customers waited months or years so they could move to the newer version on their terms. Many others have happily stayed with Basecamp Classic and have no interest in upgrading at all.

When Basecamp 3 arrived in October 2015, it similarly launched as a brand new product. There is no pressure for customers on Basecamp 2, or even Basecamp Classic, to move to the new version. All three Basecamps are here to stay.

How we got here
For our first 15 years in business we were called 37signals. We changed our name to Basecamp in 2014 to reflect a new focus on our most popular product and at that time made the hard decision to stop selling our other products. Ta-da List, Writeboard, and Backpack all stopped accepting new customers but for those who have been relying on these products for years they continue to work just as they always have. We became dedicated to supporting them forever (or until the last customer turns off the lights). Internally we’ve come to call this policy Until the End of the Internet and though we’ve only announced it publicly for Ta-da List we’ve been operating as if it were true for all our apps ever since. Today we’d like to make it official.

Until the End of the Internet is a promise
Internet software and services disappear all the time because of whimsy (“changing priorities”), acquisition, financial failure or worse. It’s become a risky venture to place your trust and data in services that could disappear at any moment, for any reason, and with no guarantee that your data will be safe, preserved, or even portable. We’d like Basecamp to stand against that.

Here’s what that means:

  • The day you become a Basecamp customer you can trust that Basecamp will be around. In the event that the Basecamp product you’re using enters a legacy phase you can keep using it, as-is, indefinitely (assuming you continue to abide by our terms of service and keep your subscription active).
  • Your data is safe. Regardless of status, all of our products receive the same rigorous care when it comes to security and privacy. While we may not add new features to legacy products we’ll continue to apply the latest security updates; maintain the infrastructure that keeps them safe, fast and secure; and continue to offer customer support. Have a question about Ta-da List, fire away!
  • Basecamp is our life’s work—we’re in this for the long haul. In the unforeseen and unanticipated event that the company or one of our products is acquired by another company, we’ll do everything in our power to make sure the product and this promise live on.

Permanence, Trust, and Legacy
When they launched, each of our products was our finest work. They were the result of countless hours laboring to build software that is simple, clear, easy-to-use and honest. They remind us where we’ve been, how we got here, and point to where we’re going. We’re proud of these products and honored by all the customers who have supported us over the years, who made our tools partners in their success, and who continue to rely on them every day. This isn’t free or easy but we believe that standing by our customers and our products is the right thing to do.

Basecamp, built-to-last since 1999.

For more details about this policy visit basecamp.com or contact us.

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