Commercialization of Information and its Implications on Democracy and Good Governance
Sustainability and self-reliance is a concept that has slowly but surely crept into Kenyan information institutions. Low or lack of funding from parent organizations has made it almost mandatory for information providers to sell their information and services to users. This “privatization syndrome” has in return made it difficult for the underprivileged information seekers in society not to access information. Information is a basic human right that all and sundry should receive freely for development and daily decision making. Lack of access to it inhibits democracy and good governance. This paper will analyse the various information providing institutions in Kenya, their economic behaviour in relation to their knowledge and information dissemination as well as the implications these economic activities have on democracy and good governance. The paper concludes that commercializing information debilitates democracy and good governance. It recommends that forming strong information providers’ networks and association, being proactive and lobbying the government to recognize the role of libraries will economically stabilize information institutions, thereby reducing the yearn for funds.