Content Liberation Army Lives! Well, maybe not in North America…

Mar 30

Happy Document Freedom Day to all of my content management geek friends out there!

And a big thank you to my friends and editors over at OpenSource.com for their recognition of what needs to become an annual day of awareness.

One of my persistent screaming nightmares that keeps me in this industry is my ongoing concern for the preservation of our social, institutional and commercial heritage as citizens, humans and participants in an increasingly digital knowledge economy. Last year I wrote a piece for OpenSource.com that continues to resonate with people. In “From Information Overload to Dark Ages 2.0” I wanted to wave the red flag to my colleagues and experts in the enterprise content management world and hope that more serious attention is paid to the importance of open standards as an essential component of a long term digital preservation strategy for our cultural and business artifacts.

Document Freedom Day is “… a global day for document liberation. March 30th will be a day of grassroots effort to educate the public about the importance of Free Document Formats and Open Standards in general.”

To my profound disappointment there are no listed activities in Canada and the US. Where are my good friends at AIIM and ARMA on this? Or the #opengovernment and #opendata community? Content is the essence of our enterprise knowledge systems in both public and private sector. Documents are the lifeblood of our commercial transactions and business activities. Images, photos, video and audio recordings form the social objects around which we’re building numerous online social networks.

And what if one day it goes poof? The vendors change the rules, render their proprietary formats unreadable, extract ransom-like tolls and licenses to able to see our friends and family once again…Are we cool with that?

I’m not.

Do something today to celebrate Document Freedom Day. When you work hard to create digital content, make sure the next generation has the rights AND the ability to read it. Don’t leave it to the hardware and software vendors to dictate access. Take control of your own content management roadmap. And let’s plan something cool for next year. We’ll make sure the Content Liberation Army lives on in 2012.