Photographers must print images they want to preserve, or treasured photos may be unavailable to future generations when digital storage media wears out or becomes obsolete.

Digital photos under threat

Even if your hard drive is fully fit, McCabe stresses that new gadgets bring design changes that are not all good.

The latest Apple MacBook Pro, for example, comes without a built-in DVD drive, unlike older models – rendering a DVD useless as an accessible storage medium unless you buy an external DVD drive.

‘How many people remember VHS?’ wonders McCabe.

‘One thing that has maintained consistency for hundreds of years, and that is something you can hold in your hands, put on a wall or even stick in a shoebox – something that is not subject to technological change…


Photo Marketing Association CEO Georgia McCabe

‘Some kids today have never held a print in their hands…’

McCabe worries that precious photos of her granddaughter will one day be lost in cyberspace, never to be seen again.

She explains that her son has 2,000 pictures of the child ‘but they are in the cloud’ and she is afraid that companies operating cloud storage services will not be around for ever.

‘I asked my son, “What happens if [the cloud] just blows up?” He replied, “Come on, Mum, Apple is not going away.”’

But McCabe is fearful. ‘Did you ever think we’d drive down Lake Avenue and see Kodak buildings that have been dynamited?

‘Did we ever think that the 58,000 who were employed there would be down to 3,000-5,000 people? Never.

‘No one could have ever imagined that a name and a company that led this industry would be where it is today.

‘And so, for me, these moments in time are precious.

‘I’m just scared that a savoured memory is going to be in a digital landfill in the sky.’


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