This announcement shouldn’t surprise any genealogists. The end of microfilm has been predicted for years. Microfilm and microfiche has become harder and harder to purchase. Most of the manufacturers have stopped producing microfilm and microfiche so the companies and non-profits that release information on film have been forced to abandon the media.
Over 1.5 million microfilms (ca. 1.5 billion images) have been digitized by FamilySearch, including the most requested collections based on microfilm loan records worldwide. In addition, many records that FamilySearch has not yet published can be found online on partner or free archive websites. FamilySearch plans to finish microfilm digitization by 2020.
The following is an extract from the announcement from FamilySearch:
On September 1, 2017, FamilySearch will discontinue its microfilm distribution services. (The last day to order microfilm will be on August 31, 2017.)
The change is the result of significant progress made in FamilySearch’s microfilm digitization efforts and the obsolescence of microfilm technology.
- Online access to digital images of records allows FamilySearch to reach many more people, faster and more efficiently.
- FamilySearch is a global leader in historic records preservation and access, with billions of the world’s genealogical records in its collections.
- Over 1.5 million microfilms (ca. 1.5 billion images) have been digitized by FamilySearch, including the most requested collections based on microfilm loan records worldwide.
- The remaining microfilms should be digitized by the end of 2020, and all new records from its ongoing global efforts are already using digital camera equipment.
- Family history centers will continue to provide access to relevant technology, premium subscription services, and digital records, including restricted content not available at home.
You can read the full announcement at: http://bit.ly/2sGGePz.
Frequently Asked Questions about the change may be found at: http://bit.ly/2s6OvO6.