Digitized and Released: what’s LAC’s situation?

“… out of some 3 million total documents, at least 78 percent have been scanned – which could mean hundreds of millions of pages total. Yet only 14 percent of the 3 million total, some 433,000 documents, have been checked by an employee and are available to the public online. Five years ago, only 5 percent of the documents were available to the public.”

That’s from a news report Despite Digitalization, Most Israeli State Archives Files Can’t Be Found Online

14 percent online is greater than I’ve seen mentioned for other similar institutions. But the article quotes Israel State Archivist Ruti Abramovitz as saying lack of funds meant the rate at which files could be processed is low, and part of the reason is unwillingness to have politically sensitive files released. Restricting funding helps keep those files under wraps.

The forthrightness of the archivist about making the statistics available is to be admired. Would that ever happen in Canada? It helps that there’s a Knesset Committee looking into the matter. Given the lack of attention to LAC by Canada’s parliamentarians that motivation is lacking.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *