Re: Virtual Library: museums and funding

 One day, funding will be an issue of the past -- we will get it; the 
question is when and how. I suspect that we need to rally together in a 
stronger way than we currently do. The WWWVL needs to show itself in the 
global marketplace: we need to standardise a copright, etc.

 If you think about it properly, the WWWVL could be an major player in the
Internet in the months and years to come. I maintain the ``Home Pages'' 
section, with around four thousand users per day (again growing at about 
1,000 per month). Eventually I can imagine a company stepping up to me 
and asking to buy the rights to ``Who's Who on the Internet'' for a large 
sum. We, together as the WWWVL, could be worth an extremely large sum if 
we seemed more connected than we are.

 I know that many of you are against the commercial side of things,
believing that we should provide a free service for ever. But remember
that the majority of Internet providers now are commercial and prepared to
charge for services. I'm not saying that we should charge directly for the
Library, rather that we should consider some way in which we can become
something more commercially viable, along the lines of an encylopedia. 
The Encyclopedia Britannica is online, incredibly useful, but not free.
Perhaps then a major corporation would buy us, with no obvious direct cost
to the end-user. Ultimately, we deal in providing information, and once we
consider things outside of the limited academic concept, commercial
returns should seem worthwhile. 

 In essence, Jonathan raised an important point, and we would be naive to
let funding/buying out pass us. 


Kirk Bowe
Who's Who on the Internet (``Home Pages'')
City University
London, England.

  Kirk Bowe | BSc Computer Science 2nd Yr | City University London England
  Creator of "Who's Who on the Internet" and "CityLive! Web Magazine"
  EMAIL: kirk@kba-net.demon.co.uk or kirk@cs.city.ac.uk
  "Velim existemes neminem cuiquam cariorem umquam fuisse cuam te mihi"