Discussing the recent vulnerability in the Bitcoin protocol
, I pointed out that:
One of the key ideas of the LOCKSS system was to decentralize custody of
content to protect against powerful adversaries' attempts to modify it.
Governments and other powerful actors have a long history of censorship
and suppression of inconvenient content. A centralized archive system
allows them to focus their legal, technical or economic power on a
Today Boing-Boing points us to a current example of government suppression of inconvenient content
that drives home the point.
Scientists say the closure of some of the world's
finest fishery, ocean and environmental libraries by the Harper
government has been so chaotic that irreplaceable collections of
intellectual capital built by Canadian taxpayers for future generations
has been lost forever.
Many collections such as the Maurice
Lamontagne Institute Library in Mont-Joli, Quebec ended up in dumpsters
while others such as Winnipeg's historic Freshwater Institute library
were scavenged by citizens, scientists and local environmental
consultants. Others were burned or went to landfills, say scientists.
Read the whole piece
, especially if you think single, government-funded archives are a solution to anything.
Of course, non-government actors are equally a threat to collections.
Via Boing Boing, here is science librarian John Dupuis' list of the stories stretching back to 2011 about the Harper government's war on science.
The Harper government's attack on collections gets worse.
At least this time the Harper administration doesn't appear to have destroyed the data, just prevented anyone talking about it.
And when someone does talk about it, smearing them.
Even bird-watchers are not exempt from the suppression of inconvenient facts.
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