09 July 2011

Going in the wrong direction on digitization

I frequently report on new Canadian resources of genealogical interest coming online through the Internet Archive.
Now The Toronto Star reports that book digitization will be cut from 1,500 books per week to 250 after funding cuts to Internet Archive Canada forces the small non-profit company with offices at the University of Toronto to fire 35 of its 47 employees.
For the lack of $1 million 35 jobs will be lost and perhaps 60,000 books will not be digitized in the next 12 months.
Yet another example of the consequences of the lack of leadership from LAC?

via Brenda Merriman on Facebook.


DWP said...

John, thank you for the link to the Toronto Star article, a "must read". I had never heard of this very large Internet Archive scanning operation in Toronto.

Their fund raising efforts must have been very low key. "The company relies chiefly on funding from Canadian universities" Why chiefly? Why not from governments at all levels, libraries, archives, corporations AND individuals? Where do I donate?

Joanne Stanbridge said...

I'm shocked and saddened to hear about these cuts. The scanning centre recently digitized about 40 city directories for the Kingston Frontenac Public Library. Within a few months the results had been downloaded more than 2000 times. The scanning team were great, the service was incredibly fast and affordable, and the directories are now available free for anyone to use--for many years to come. What a loss!

JDR said...

Kudos to the Kingston Frontenac Public Library is to be complimented for doing this. If only more public libraries would take the initiative to digitize their local historic published records.