The full quote:
Ken Garrison: When I was telling my wife about what I was going to be talking with you about, she had a naïve but kind of profound question, which is “Why are you doing this? Why are you trying to archive the entire world and the entire internet?”
Brewster Kahle: It’s really based on an analogy, if you will: that it seemed to work in other times - that the idea of having access to the collective works of humankind has been a win. So, we all look back to the Library of Alexandria. And by going and pulling together the works from all over the world and translating them then into Ancient Greek, they were able to come up with fantastic discoveries. They knew how big the world was. They knew it was round. They knew how big it was within a couple percent. Euclid authored “Elements,” which is what it is I still studied as geometry in high school. So, fantastic things can come of it if you can leverage the works of other people. And the reason why I got involved in the whole area of building the library back in 1980 was just kind of on that analogy and the thought that technology allows us to do this and it seems like a good thing to do.
July 2012 Highlights from the Underground New York Public Library
Each one was its own moment. It’s great to see them all together.
1. “The God Delusion,” by Richard Dawkins 2. “The Birth of Tragedy,” by Friedrich Nietzsche 3. “Mary Poppins,” by Dr. P. L. Travers 4. “The Stranger Beside Me,” by Ann Rule 5. “Queer,” by William S. Burroughs 6. “Just My Type: A Book About Fonts,” by Simon Garfield 7. “By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept,” by Elizabeth Smart 8. “Know Thyself,” by Na’im Akbar 9. “Star Wars (The Old Republic): Fatal Alliance,” by Sean Williams 10. “Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant,” by Anne Tyler
I’m looking forward to the new characters who will come with their books to the Underground New York Public Library in August!
The charter continues,
Entrusted with the preservation of our shared knowledge and culture, not-for-profit memory organisations should take upon themselves a special role in the effective labelling and preserving of Public Domain works. As part of this role they need to ensure that works in the Public Domain are accessible to all of society, by making them available as widely as possible. It is important for memory organisations to recognise that as the guardians of our shared culture and knowledge they play a central role in enabling the creativity of citizens and providing the raw materials for contemporary culture, science, innovation and economic growth.
The comment continues,
It turns out to be surprisingly hard to convince (some) people that the very best thing to do with the treasures of the world is to give them to the world. So many of them [museums and other collecting institutions] are so fixated on ‘ownership’ that they just can’t let go. Hopefully, they’ll all die off soon and the generation now growing up will take a more mature approach — that is, they’ll realize that everything from academic papers to great art belongs to everyone, and that anyone attempting to claim them for themselves is a hoarder — to be despised, shunned, and overruled.