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Introducing the Levels of Born-Digital Access

Shira Peltzman, Jessica Venlet & Brian Dietz

Shira Peltzman, Jessica Venlet & Brian Dietz

Last updated on 26 February 2020

By Brian Dietz (Digital Program Librarian for Special Collection, NC State University Libraries), Shira Peltzman (Digital Archivist, UCLA Library) and Jessica Venlet (Assistant University Archivist for Digital Records and Records Management, UNC at Chapel Hill University Libraries)


The decisions facing those who work with born-digital archival materials are myriad. While it has become increasingly easier to find technical processing workflows and lists of handy tools, documentation and guidance on exactly how to provide access to our born-digital collections has lagged behind in our collective conversations. 

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IDCC 2020 Dublin - ‘Identifying Opportunities for Collective Curation During Archaeological Excavations'

Hannah Smith

Hannah Smith

Last updated on 25 February 2020

Hannah Smith is Digital Archives Manager at Historic Environment Scotland. She attended IDCC 2020 with support from the DPC's Career Development Fund which is funded by DPC Supporters.


On the first day of the main conference at the 15th IDCC I opted to attend the mornings sessions on the theme of ‘Collaboration on Digital Curation’, with Ixchel Faniel’s session on ‘Identifying Opportunities for Collective Curation During Archaeological Excavations’ as the main source for this blog post.

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Advocacy and Pilot Projects with Born Digital Photography at the National Library of Ireland

Della Keating & Joanna Finegan

Della Keating & Joanna Finegan

Last updated on 26 February 2020

The National Library of Ireland (NLI) is home to collections that record the memory of Ireland. This includes extensive visual collections in the form of prints, drawings and ephemera. The NLI also holds the world’s largest collection of photographs relating to Ireland, in a variety of formats from daguerreotypes to chromogenic processes. But what about the contemporary visual record, Irish born digital photography?


In order to develop our capacity to collect, preserve and share Irish heritage, which is now in digital form, the library has commenced a series of three pilot projects focused on unpublished born digital collections. These originate from diverse sources representing contemporary Irish life. Late in 2019 bestselling Irish author Marian Keyes donated the archive of her novel, The Mystery of Mercy Close and we look forward to announcing the third donor later this year.

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DAPP: keeping all my digital preservation resources in a handy app

Sean Macmillan

Sean Macmillan

Last updated on 10 February 2020

Sean Macmillan is an Archivist currently based at the University of London, Senate House Library. At Senate House and in past roles, he’s tackled various digital preservation challenges. He’s currently occupied with helping to develop Senate House’s Digital Ecosystem project. He also recently catalogued the Cusichaca Trust Archive at Senate House, which includes a substantial collection of valuable digital media. He also helped to implement digital workflows in the Bodleian’s BEAM department and planned preservation for the private audio-visual archives of a high-profile client.

Throughout these experiences, Sean has accumulated knowledge and discovered resources about preserving digital materials. To make the most of this valuable information and to keep it close to hand, Sean developed an app using Filemaker Pro. Now, having worked at a range of different organisations, that app holds quite a rich store of information. At this stage, Sean is interested in learning if others might find it useful or have suggestions for how it might be sustained or enhanced. In this blog post, Sean describes the background of DAPP, shows how it can be used at the moment, and issues a call for feedback and advice.

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All of Us First

William Kilbride

William Kilbride

Last updated on 26 February 2020

Earlier this week I had the pleasure to acknowledge the work of Barbara Sierman at a workshop hosted in the Koninklijke Bibliotheek in Den Haag. Barbara had invited me, Micky Lindlar of TIB in Hamburg, Ingrid Dillo of DANS and Marcel Ras of DHN to speak on the single word ‘Re-use’. This blog is the text of my contribution to that discussion.  The presentation was also recorded and shared online. The recording can be viewed here.

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Suite deal for DPC Members

Paul Wheatley

Paul Wheatley

Last updated on 30 January 2020

It's been all action at the DPC in recent weeks, what with new members of staff and even a new office in Australia, but we've also been beavering away on some new member offerings in the background. In this blog post I'm going to talk about a suite of new (and revised) resources for our members which will be appearing over the next few months.

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That water cooler moment…

Sarah Middleton

Sarah Middleton

Last updated on 24 January 2020

This time last year, in January 2019, we were about to hold our first DPC Members Lounge. It is an idea we had been toying with for a while… we wanted to provide an opportunity for members to get together and chat informally, without an agenda and just on the topics that were at the front of their minds at that time, kind of like you might around…say… a water cooler?

Often the best ideas come when you give yourself a break, have a chat and let the conversation go whichever way it takes you.

And so the monthly Members Lounge was born (we called it that for want of a better name and because we couldn’t quite replicate a water cooler. A little imagination is required).

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Everybody is [Gonna Be] Kung Fu Fighting!

Sharon McMeekin

Sharon McMeekin

Last updated on 22 January 2020

Establishing a new programme of work can be incredibly difficult to do if you cannot devote enough focused time and resources towards the objectives you wish to achieve. I bring this up because the DPC has been keen to break into online training provision for several years now, especially with our membership growing in terms of both numbers and diversity of location. It is, however, not an easy thing to do, and even harder to do well.Graphic showing elements of online training

There needs to be time spent on procuring and implementing a learning management system. You need to test out content creation software and get training in how to use it well once you’ve found the package that’s right for you. You need to think about learner needs and how to manage their training experience.  And all of this (and more!) needs to happen before you even begin to think about designing courses and creating content, which is incredibly labour intensive in itself.

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Nothing About Us Without Us

William Kilbride

William Kilbride

Last updated on 22 January 2020

I was asked recently to sketch out some thoughts about archives and artificial intelligence. I am drawn to the topic as usual but with little real clue of where to start, so my point of departure is a comment on ethics. I have no real mandate to frame the ethical tone for what should be a very important debate, but if we don’t start here – if we put technology first – then there’s every possibility that we will end in the wrong place, either through sterile solutionizing, or worse by selling the whole farm to obscure, unaccountable and deeply unattractive corporate interests.

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Making a list, checking it twice…Migrating a digital national archive to a new storage infrastructure

Garth Stewart

Garth Stewart

Last updated on 10 January 2020

Garth Stewart is Head of Digital Records Unit at National Records of Scotland


Anyone who has ever moved home can probably agree that it is at once a very exciting, yet stressful experience. Fitting your personal belongings into cardboard boxes can be a real mission; delivery vans can sometimes turn up at the wrong address, or not at all; and once you do manage to transport everything across town and country to your new gaff and unpack everything, inevitably something goes missing in transit. In short, moving big collections of stuff significantly increases the risk of loss.

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