Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Canada is lagging behind in terms of a national digital library

Krista McCracken, a Researcher/Curator at Algoma University has posted a review Digital Libraries and National Digitization Programmes: How Does Canada Compare?
In the US the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) now includes more than 5,700,000 items from libraries, archives, and museums across the Country.
The National Library of Norway has set itself the ambitious task of digitizing every Norwegian publication.
"The British Library has made substantial efforts at providing digital copies of out of copyright material in their holdings and has created web portals that are user friendly and informative."
In Canada McCracken points to some thematic digitization projects undertaken by LAC but concludes that "cuts to staffing and programming have contributed to a slow pace of digitization." She is cautiously optimistic about the Canadiana/LAC partnership which "may be the first step toward closing the open access and digitization gaps but a significant amount of work still needs to be done."
Although small by comparison to the DPLA the efforts of various Canadian institutions which have resulted in the digitization of more than 450,000 items in the Canadian Libraries section of the Internet Archive should not go unnoticed.

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