Regarding the situation with libraries and access to downloads…this is not new. Libraries gave up ownership years ago when they acquired access to online versions of periodicals and periodical indexing as well as other databases. Then we have ebooks. It seems as though we are left with substantive questions regarding ownership and the ability to provide access to the public.
We have seen situations where record companies divested themselves of their master discs. What will happen should the electronic suppliers dump their product. Will they pass it along to a library? Will libraries still be around when the time comes? If libraries are still around, will they have sufficient budgets and technical expertise to deal with and maintain these files should they become available? I have seen no evidence to suggest that libraries have either.
And what of all of the individual musicians who have their own sites where they make their recordings available? When they leave the business, it is likely their work will disappear. Certainly there are questions as to what should be preserved, and, couple that with copyright questions…we have quite a challenge.
As it has been previously discussed in the ARSC list, this evolution raises questions regarding the notions of preservation. What can you preserve if you don't own the "object." I had hoped that the implementation of digital information would serve as a catalyst for libraries to address the preservation of the physical objects that they do own. Sadly, I have not seen any statistics to suggest that this is happening.
On Saturday, May 17, 2014 11:57 PM, John Vallier <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
While it's impossible to predict the future of anything--including CDs--I do think we can say we are seeing an increase in the distribution of online-only music (and video). This presents a growing issue for libraries and archives. As more sound recordings are licensed and distributed through online-only means and are accompanied by restrictive licenses that explicitly forbid institutional ownership and such core library functions as lending, the amount of published material available for libraries to collect is slowly shrinking. It may not be a huge swell of titles at this point, but there are some significant ones: e.g., Dudamel's DG release of Brahms Symphony No. 4.
U Washington and MLA have received an IMLS grant this year to look at the issue and to brainstorm possible solutions. Called “National Forum on Online-Only Music," the project is essentially a series of meetings, fueled by white papers written by leading experts in IP and other areas. The final of our three meetings will be held in conjunction with NRPB's annual meeting in DC this fall. We hope to develop approaches to the issues including a licensing scenario by which libraries may purchase and provide access to online-only music. More about the grant can be found here:
If you come across examples of online-only music, please share them with me off-list. I'll add them to our "Online-Only Music Roster" that can be found at the above site.
Head, Distributed Media
U of Washington Libraries, Seattle
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Richard Griscom [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Friday, May 16, 2014 11:29 AM
> To: MLA-L
> Subject: [MLA-L] Future of CDs
> The CD might not be dying anytime soon, but there is clearly a trend away
> from the purchase of physical objects toward the purchase of digital
> Richard Griscom
> Head, Otto E. Albrecht Music Library and office 215/898-3450
> Eugene Ormandy Music and Media Center
> Interim Head, Fisher Fine Arts Library office 215/573-4635
> University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia PA 19104-6206