[Foundation-l] 6 reasons we're in another book-burning periodin history

geni geniice at gmail.com
Sat Oct 15 03:36:10 UTC 2011

On 15 October 2011 00:49, Phil Nash <phnash at blueyonder.co.uk> wrote:
> My view is that they should be kept, at least to assist in applying
> verifiability policies, and if necessary, assessing neutrality.

I'm not sure that libraries are too worried about Wikipedia's
verifiability policies

> I agree, but we have no way of knowing.

Of course we do. You don't have to pay that much attention to your
local library service to know what is going on.

>However, lots of non-fiction is
> never going to achieve notability, so that may not be a great loss.

Not so. It's precisely the obscure stuff that tends to suffer from the
"written down and then forgotten" problem.

> Similarly, state-controlled/funded archives are vulnerable, in the extreme,
> to manipulation and/or destruction. And in the UK at least, all significant
> archives (British Library/local libraries/universities) are pretty dependent
> on public funding. Without a truly independent, privately funded, more or
> less complete archive of everything, there is always a risk of attrition for
> one reason or another.

Private archives have far worse records. Long term archiving gets
seriously expensive if done on any scale. On the plus side the rather
temporary nature of private archives means more availability of
material through second hand sellers.

Governments tend to be pretty good at keeping archives. They last
longer and since they tend to be aware that they need to know what
went on even if their population doesn't they do tend to hold an
tampered archive somewhere. Shear size also makes serious messing
difficult. Shear size does however cause things to be lost. I'm still
not sure where the old coal board archives ended up.

However archiving is rather different from what we are dealing with
which is more focused on books and other mass market material rather
than say old planning application maps and minutes of the union of
postal workers 1937.


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