Greece holds 2% of the materials gathered in Europeana ( www.europeana.eu ) – the European digital library, museum, and archive. Greece is 5th among the EU countries with France holding 52%, Great Britain and Holland 10%, Finland 8%. Veria public library ( www.libver.gr/en )is representing the country.
Europeana is a project, which started during 2007 with the goal to create an original website, which will give direct access to users who will be able to dig into the treasures of libraries, cultural foundations, including – videos, images, paintings, sounds, maps, manuscripts, books, newspapers, and archive documents in 21 languages. The digital contents of the library is chosen among the already done digitalized materials of European museums, libraries, archive and audio-visual collections.
During September 2007 the majority of European parliament members voted for the development of the idea of creating a digital library and so Europeana started. In this regard European commission chairman Jose Manuel Barozo said that “Europeana combines European’s priority of the communication technology field and networks with our rich cultural heritage. Europeana is not just a library but an inspiration fountain for 21st century Europeans, which will help them compete in the creative thought together with some of our genius ancestors like architects from the Renaissance.”
More than 1000 cultural organizations from all around Europe have given materials for Europeana, among which are the digital collections from the Louvre in Paris, Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam; the national archive services have provided important governmental documents, and the French national foundation for audio-visual services have given 80 000 radio show recordings from the 20th century, including the first recordings from the war field in France during 1914.
Unfortunately, the Europeana website crashed on the first day of its official loading on the net because the traffic exceeded 10 million users per hour! This caused a problem, which according to the official statement will be solved during the middle of December by having a more stable site, which will be able to sustain so many users.