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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Sydney Morning Herald Decries "Aim, Shoot and Forget"

The Sydney Morning Herald in Australia illustrated the ongoing challenge of digital photography. Yes, consumers are shooting more pictures, but that now raises this issue of finding, organizing, and storing those images. And, according to writer Nikki Macdonald, these are activities consumers are forgoing.

"With almost two-thirds of all households now estimated to own a digital camera, today's youngsters face being deluged with an overwhelming number of childhood memories. Every smile, every milestone, every bad hair day faithfully recorded.

"But there's a much worse possibility.

"Ever discovered a stash of mildewed 5-inch floppy disks and realised the computer you used to record them has long since been binned and there's no way to get access to the information? Or pulled out an old video to find the image crackles and blurs across the screen?" asks the article.
Despite thousands of photos, Australian consumers have few prints of their photos and are placing these memories at risk by relying on either dubious back-up strategies or on mobile devices that can be easily lost.

"A recent Australian survey suggested that only 16 percent of digital snappers print their photos and more than three-quarters believe digital files are at least as safe as prints," says the article. "If these digital family archives are not constantly updated, there's a real risk that large amounts of our social history will be lost."

"It's not enough just to store photographs and keep back-ups," warns Internet consultant Paul Reynolds, of McGovern Online, in the article. "You have to keep it up to speed. The idea that you can keep the CD-ROM and forget about it for 50 years -- it will not be there."

[source: PMA Newsline, May 13]

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