In an article published in The Irish Times on March 13th, 2008, it appears that there is a controversy within the Irish government about the fees that the Irish Family History Foundation is charging for access to databases containing Irish genealogical records.
Fine Gael spokeswoman for Arts, Sports and Tourism, Olivia Mitchell, stated that “The gathering and digitalisation of the parish records was done at public expense and it was always envisaged that this kind of public information should be made freely available to the public.”
To read the complete article, go to: http://www.cigo.ie/IrishTimes13March2008.html
The fees being charged for each viewed record was initially set at 10 Euros, but it was temporarily lowered to 5 Euros in order to attract attention within the genealogical community. It definitely has attracted attention, but not all of the attention has been favorable. A search of the Irish-oriented genealogical mailing lists hosted by Rootsweb reveals quite a few gripes about the services being offered by IFHF, and the total costs involved in trying to gather meaningful genealogical data from the service provider.