Just for a moment engage your "willing suspension of disbelief". Imagine that CCP, at downtime today, reset everything in Eve Online. Everything! When you logged in you were in a starter system with your character... but now with less than a million skill points, a mere 5000 ISK and a noob ship (now with civilian afterburner!). Markets are pretty empty other than a few seeded items. All Sov is gone. All player structures are gone. All PI infrastructure is gone. No corps or alliances exist. Nothing remains. New Eden is suddenly a completely level playing field and the next great gold-rush is on? Or is it? What happens now?
I couldn't start over. I spent a decade, ten freaking unbelievable years, getting to where I am now. And where I am is someone with tens of billions of personal assets, billions more in investor's ISK, and enough skills to safely say yes to the question "can you fly this PvP ship?". I can't fathom going back to watching skill queues for unlocking modules, grinding missions or asteroids for ISK, rebuilding blueprint libraries and collected ships and items...
I would quit. I'd say "it was a good run, but I'm gone". I don't have the time or patience to rebuild that small little personal empire back to anywhere near what it is now. While I love PvP in EVE, and leading fleets and participating in big battles, I don't think that is enough to convince me to spend so much effort to feel comfortable in the game again with any ship class, weapon, or module.
Saying that makes me feel weak. Like I am not as much as a fan as the people would swear they would continue to play from the start again for the love of the game. But my free time is precious and accomplishments are treasured, and if I lost it all I think I would have to just love EVE from afar, like a former girlfriend I had fun with but just didn't want to make the journey through the dark times for.
Fortunately for me, I don't think I'm alone in this regard and I suspect CCP would not want to lose a lot of veteran players so they make sure the game data is backed up doubly so :)