11 November 2012

Pan-Canadian Documentary Heritage Forum

On 5-6 November Library and Archives Canada convened the third in a series of meetings termed the Pan-Canadian Documentary Heritage Forum with representatives from library and archival organizations. I previously posted an outline of the agenda for the meeting.

An opening address by Daniel Caron has now been posted at http://www.bac-lac.gc.ca/eng/news/speeches/Pages/pan-canadian-documentary-heritage-forum.aspx

The themes of the speech were familiar to anyone who follows developments at the institution that is LAC.

What was not addressed, the elephant in the room, is how LAC can again be trusted as a partner having unilaterally withdrawn all support for the National Archival Development Program, and unilaterally eliminated its role as a lender for inter-library loan.

The speech again stressed the importance of digitization:

"We are also devoting considerable effort to digitizing our material. On this critical front, this is only the beginning, but our digitization choices are based on criteria to ensure that we start with material that is of the absolute highest interest to Canadians."
LAC has been talking about digitization for years, more so recently in connection with the elimination of its major inter-library loan role. Detail is lacking. To be credible the organization needs to be up front with its plans, what will it deliver, and when?

Unfortunately I've been unable to find any comment on the meeting proceedings from any other organization involved but would be pleased to publish any report or comments, or a link, so that the interested broader community is not kept in the dark.


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