Techdirt Reading List: When We Are No More: How Digital Memory Is Shaping Our Future

from the memory-is-about-the-future dept

We’re back again with another in our weekly reading list posts of books we think our community will find interesting and thought provoking. Once again, buying the book via the Amazon links in this story also helps support Techdirt.

Earlier this week, I heard Abby Smith Rumsey do a wonderful and fascinating interview with Russ Roberts on his Econtalk podcast. Rumsey is a writer and historian who spent many years working at or with the Library of Congress working on archiving and preserving cultural works — including many years focusing on digital preservation. Out of that comes her book, When We Are No More: How Digital Memory Is Shaping Our Future.

I haven’t yet read the whole thing, but from what I have read, it’s a wonderfully written book that delves into a number of issues not just around archiving and preserving digital content — but thinking about what is memory itself, including about how important it is to the future. The book (not surprisingly) does touch a bit on questions we often discuss here, such as copyright, but also provokes a lot of thought around the nature of digital content, and whether or not we’ll really be able to preserve it going into the future. Of course, it also talks about why it’s so important to preserve information and looks at some historical issues around culture preservation and memory. All in all, it’s a really fascinating and thought-provoking work.

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