On the 14th June, DPASSH commences its second conference addressing the issues of digital preservation and the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities. I look forward to taking part and giving a paper on the application of some hard-earned best practice in digital preservation to social media research and heritage collections.

For the past decade, the conversation about social media research has centred on access and sharing – perhaps understandably given the restrictions imposed by platform terms and conditions. However, despite the challenges, the conversation about long-term preservation should not be drowned out by issues of access.

The lessons of community building and advocacy developed through digital preservation provide a useful model for preserving social media. Increasing public knowledge about the benefits of social media research and heritage collections has the potential to bolster reform of social media data policies. If these valuable records have any hope of surviving, research and collecting institutions must take an assertive stance towards preservation and advocacy.

This paper advocates for closer collaboration between researchers and information professionals to increase efforts to ensure long-term access to social media research data and heritage collections. It further argues for increased communications and organisational support for more open platform data policies, positioning DPC as a catalyst for growing advocacy.


pdf iconYou can download a PDF of my full conference paper here . Can you relate to the difficulties of curating and preserving social media? Have a suggestion for change or an alternative approach? Leave a comment below or catch me on Twitter @sdaythomson


 If you can’t make DPASSH this year, I hope you’ll keep tabs on the #dpassh on Twitter. 



The Sussex Humanities Lab (SHL) and the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) are hosting the second ‘Digital Preservation for Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities’ conference (DPASSH 2017) at the University of Sussex, Brighton, 14-15 June 2017.

DPASSH is a response to the problem of digital preservation within the arts and social sciences domains. It seeks to address the complexities of long-term digital preservation of the full variety of research materials; and to encourage a long-term dialogue around the issues created by such preservation.

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