I have to take issue with your statement that microfilm is a one-time
expense. In my library, the microfilm collection (censuses, city
directories, church records, and newspapers) has been ruined by running it
through poorly maintained microfilm readers that scratched the film to the
point that much of it is unusable. I'm assuming that microfilm masters exist
somewhere and that it would not be necessary to film the (probably
discarded) originals again, however, this particular library cannot even
afford the cost of purchasing replacement microfilm. This microfilm
collection has been around for a long time, and I'm sure that with proper
storage and care it would have lasted longer, but just like books, microfilm
can be damaged and does wear out eventually through use.

Chris Andrle

----- Original Message -----
From: "Pullen, Sharon" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, November 08, 2001 9:12 AM
Subject: Re: providing online

> The idea that digitally formatting something is a one-time cost is not
> valid.  Digitization is currently too software/hardware dependent to be a
> one-time expense. There are constant upgrades, migrations, etc. that
> necessary.  Microfilm, on the other hand is a one-time expense and can be
> used as a basis for digitization, so as far as expense, it is still the
> cost-effective method of preservation.
> Sharon A. Pullen, CA
> Suffolk County Archivist
> Historical Documents Library
> Office of the County Clerk
> 310 Center Drive
> Riverhead, NY 11901-3392
> Phone: 631-852-2015
> Email: [log in to unmask]