They are right, too, to take the budgetary initiative in these straitenedHeh. Who would ever have thought that if you make archives user friendly, people may find interesting things in them?
times. But the perennial tough choice between supporting often rarefied research
and attracting the masses has got tougher, and solutions are proving elusive.
The archive has hoped that putting more material online would cut the numbers
trekking to Kew. In vain, it seems: document downloads were up by nearly 13%
this August from the same month a year earlier, yet at least as many visitors
showed up in person. The archive is, in a sense, the victim of its own
Thursday, October 1, 2009
If You Build It, They Will Come
Here's a link from the Economist that's part of a different part of my life - but one that I don't have a blog for at the moment, so I'm sticking it in here. The British National Archives - like all archives - is having budget problems. Apparently, howver, they thought they could encourage folks not to come and visit (and use electricity, erode the carpets, and, worst of all, impinge upon the solitude of the archivists), by putting stuff online. Nope.