Jean-Yves Mollier: Says Online Libraries Serve the Wealthy

Historians in the News

The French historian Jean-Yves Mollier, interviewed by Gilles Heuré, criticises the Google intiative to create an on-line library. The purpose of the search engine is "to make money and pay its share-holders. With this in mind, it will not be recommending books that are hardly ever ordered. This is why public power ... should introduce other search engines. Personally, I am more in favour of engines that function according to language rather than states. ... I am afraid that with a European search engine, rich countries with big libraries, - France, the United Kingdom, Germany Spain or Italy - might stifle the others. It seems to me that language-based search engines would be fairer. But I am probably being utopian, as this would require the support of institutions. UNESCO would probably be in the best position to pilot it."

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