Alexis Madrigal is a scholar and writer. His areas of interest are quite focused, so he spends a lot of time in research, both online and in traditional libraries. He has now written an interesting article entitled, A Writer’s Plea: Figure Out How to Preserve Google Books.
Madrigal's article has nothing to do with genealogy or history; but, as I read it, I kept thinking about the implications to genealogists who also use traditional libraries and online resources. Madrigal focused on Google Books, but most of what he wrote applies equally to the Internet Archive, JSTOR, arXiv, and newspaper archives like Proquest and Chronicling America.
The article claims that libraries are sometimes providing a disservice to patrons as "... many libraries are managing their works as if information wanted to be kept cloistered and expensive in both time and money."
He also writes, "Google Books isn’t quite as good for modern books, but it’s still better than any library."
Interesting article. If you have an interest in libraries, you might want to read A Writer’s Plea: Figure Out How to Preserve Google Books by Alexis Madrigal in Wired at http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2009/09/preserve-google-books/.
My thanks to Gary Routh for telling me about this article.