Sunday, August 17, 2014

Prints, CD Flash Drive, where will they be in 100 years?

Prints or CD or Flash Drive 

This is always a debate between professional photographers.   Which to do.  I struggled with it as well.   I offer my clients some choices.   But what I am surprised about....most want the CD or Flash Drive.    Sure, I know media.  They can go home and instantly start showing off their pictures on Facebook, Instagram and all the others.  That is fun.   

But.......  where will that CD or Flash Drive be in 5 years....20 years.....  50 years.......and yes, think about 150 years.    Ipads will be gone sometime, the laptop you are using right now won't last many more years.  Let's face many CDs have you lost in the last year, scratched in the last year, your child tried to microwave it....or put it in a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.   Flash drives....they are great....  how many have been lost or the dog ate it.   
So you spent that money for all of those professional photographs and they're gone.   Ok.....You go back to your photographer and ask for another copy.  Most have them backed up.  Some only back up for a year.   Did you know that over 70% of the photographers that are there today, won't be there this time next year?  Most invest a lot of money into the equipment, but never learn the business side and go under or worse, they never learn to use their equipment properly and realize they will never pay off all that equipment and sell it.  Once they do that, those backups tend to disappear.  

 How many remember 3 1/2 inch diskettes?  How many of you still have a computer that can access one?    Did you know some of the new laptops out don't have cd rom drives.  They are slowly going away.  Now its SD cards, mini SD cards and thankfully USB flash drives are still here.   But who knows in 10 or 20 years.   
Now I have you thinking about the future and how you will still view the photos, at least I hope that's what you are thinking about. If not, how many times have you been around the family and someone pulls out an old photo album?   There you are, looking at pictures of your grandma when she was a little girl.  There is a picture of your Uncle when he was in the Army in Vietnam.  You can put a face with all of these stories you've heard.  You can connect with a relative you've never met.   Those photos have lasted that long.   Technology has come a long way in printing photographs.   Some are worse and start fading after a year.  When you get prints from the professional labs, they will last.   Don't you want your grandchild to see a picture of you when you were a senior?  Let's face it ladies, most of us aren't gifted to keep that athletic body we had when we were seniors.    What about your great grandchildren,  nieces and nephews?  Don't you want them to be able to sit down at the table and have someone pull out photos of you?  Will that flash drive or CD rom still be around?  And the cloud.....  some say...well I save it to the cloud......   Where in the heck is that cloud anyways?

Anyways..... no matter where you live, no matter who your photographer is, consider getting prints done in archival inks or the better printing systems where ink isn't even involved.   In 150 years, no telling who will get to enjoy them. 

Now, I don't have any expertise in knowing about the future of digital files....but, nor do many people. A quick Google search seems to show that no one really knows how they will be handled in the future. One recommended strategy is to make hard copies of important documents and photos!

1 comment:

  1. Just a matter of time before that cloud drifts away....