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------ Forwarded Message

From: Carl 

It is perhaps of no great shock to anybody that a deal has been
reached between the National Archives and a private contractor,
for digitization of our national heritage.  As these things
always go, the private sector will add lots of value to this
otherwise unusable bunch of useless data in return for certain
assurances from the government.

Here's the press release:

As is of course required for any government procurement, a copy of
the contract is available for everybody to look at:

The digitization effort is being provided an honest-to-goodness
web 2.0 .com startup:

"Millions of original documents - most never seen on the web before."

And, if you read the footnote.com terms of service, you'll note that
our national heritage has been re-classified as adults-only.  You
have to be 18 to get an account and under no circumstances may anybody
under 13 be allowed to look at archival documents:

The National Archives receives a copy of all the digital media for their
archives, but the contract prohibits the Internet Archive (or
anybody else for that matter) from having a copy of that data.

It is amazing to me how often the government goes down the road of
trying to privatize public information.

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