Pastebin

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A pastebin is a type of web application where users can store plain text. They are most commonly used to share short source code snippets for code review via Internet Relay Chat. The first pastebin was located at pastebin.com, but other sites with the same functionality have appeared, and several open source pastebin scripts are available. GitHub Gists are a type of pastebin with version control.

Pastebins arose in the late 1990s to prevent the IRC flooding that sometimes arose on channels devoted to computer programming when a user pasted some program code directly into the channel. The code would be posted by their IRC client as separate lines, potentially disrupting the channel as the individual lines were sent.[1] By using a pastebin, the user could simply paste the web link. Some pastebins were accompanied by IRC bots that would announce the URLs of new pastes in their channel. Since pastebins are so easily and trivially implemented in most programming languages, many different implementations exist, including ones in Lisp, PHP, Perl and Python. Writing one is regarded as a good introductory exercise for new programmers or those learning a new language.[2]

Aside from sharing program code, pastebins are sometimes used to anonymously publish texts online.[3][4]

History of Pastebin.com[edit]

Although created in 2002, Pastebin.com only reached 1 million "Active" pastes (not spam or expired pastes) eight years later, in 2010.[5] In February 2010, Pastebin.com was sold by the original owner, Paul Dixon, to Jeroen Vader, a Dutch serial Internet entrepreneur. Only a few weeks after the transfer, Vader had launched a whole new version of the website which he branded V2.0. In early 2011, V3.0 was launched.[6]

By October 2011, the site's active pastes numbers exceeded 10 million.[5] Less than a year later, in July 2012, the owners of Pastebin.com tweeted that they had already surpassed the 20 million active pastes mark.[7]

During the 2014 Venezuelan protests, Pastebin.com was blocked by the country's government as one of the sites where activists were sharing information.[8]

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