Lots of people probably won't read the previous post. People like "right-sized" posts and don't tend to read the long ones. (Same with comments.)
I woke up this morning meaning to add a very short coda to yesterday's post, before I get started watching the golf, to the effect that good habits just aren't that hard to get into. Think through the issues of permanence and the "store 'n' ignore" principle from the start, and it's just not that much extra work.
And then here's what I found in my morning's email, from old e-friend Paul Butzi out on the West Coast:
The discussion you're having (leading?) about archiving/preservation/conservation is an interesting one, and of course it's gotten to the point (as it must always) where someone is asking, not unreasonably, why bother?
Arguments can be made both ways. Future historical value—sure, maybe. Preserving a legacy, maybe. Ego, maybe. The vast majority of photographs made are worthless, surely.
But what I've noticed is that putting in a sensible amount of effort to order and preserve my photographs is part of what I think of as "doing a good job." And, in the end, photography as a pastime is more enjoyable and more rewarding to me when I have the sense that I'm doing the best job I can at it. If I'm going to do a crappy job, why bother? Doing a crappy job is no fun at all.
And thus, my argument for why it's important to take modest measures to order your work sensibly and make it possible it will survive into the future: it's more fun that way.
Doing it right as you go along really doesn't cost much at all in the way of extra time, effort, or expense.
Even if you haven't done anything about preservation in the past, maybe think about starting now and doing a better job from here on out.
(Thanks to Paul for his permission to publish his email)
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Original contents copyright 2011 by Michael C. Johnston and/or the bylined author. All Rights Reserved.