Libraries as bastions of freedom of information and culture in an information economy

The electronic information and communications revolution is leading to a world with different social and economic features; these include the commercialization of information creation and provision and of culture. Libraries have suffered from reduced funding, and are more subject to political and populist influence. Since the commercial information sector has no responsibility for supporting culture or objective values, libraries have importance as independant channels of information. They should also help to develop in people the ability to discriminate among the mass of information of very diverse quality on the Internet.