From the paper:
- "This failure --- and its prevalence is all too commonplace in many companies, laboratories and agencies ---is that for many people it is more painful and troublesome to have information than for them not to have it."
- "In the building and planning of our information handling and retrieving systems, we have tended to believe implicitly and to assume throughout, that having information easily available was always a good thing, and that all people who had access to an information system would want to use the system to get the information. It is now my suggestion that may people may not want information, and that they will avoid using a system precisely because it gives them information."
- "In many work environments, the penalties for not being diligent in the finding and use of information are minor, if they exist at all. In fact, such lack of diligence tends often to be rewarded. The man who does not fuss with information is seen at his bench, plainly at work, getting the job done. Approval goes to projects where things are happening. One must be courageous or imprudent, or both, to point out from the literature that a current laboratory project which has had an expensive history and full backing of the management was futile from the outset. "
- "Unlike a meeting I attended in England, at engineering meetings in this country it is not considered quite proper for a member of the audience to get up and to give out in plain language the citation and facts showing the lack of content or novelty in a paper."
- "Where rewards, instead of punishment, go with not using information, we can expect that any information retrieval system will be used only with reluctance. On the other hand, there are situations where the diligent finding and use of information is stressed and rewarded, and where failure to find or to use information is severely punished. In such places, we can expect retrieval systems to be actively used and we can expect pressure from the information users themselves for better systems. This turns out to be true in practice."