The principal blogger of Off the Record is SAA President Rachel Vagts
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Category Archives: Access
News media indicate that two members of the University of Oregon library archives staff, James Fox and Kira Homo, who previously had been put on administrative leave “will not be returning to their positions.” See background here: http://www2.archivists.org/news/2015/saa-response-to-member-request-re-university-of-oregon-records-release-incident.
SAA has no information beyond what is in the media. We have not yet heard from University Librarian Adriene Lim, who indicated that she would be in contact with SAA following the investigation.
As this is a personnel matter, it is confidential and we are unlikely to receive substantive information. We have had no communication with the two archivists, both of whom are SAA members, and they are unlikely to be at liberty to discuss this situation.
Although SAA is not in a position to comment responsibly on this specific situation, it raises real concerns for those of us who manage access to records, especially in the digital age. We are engaged in conversations about what SAA might do to support education and training in navigating the challenges associated with access, restricted records, attorney-client privilege, redaction, and related issues and practices. If you have thoughts, suggestions, or concerns, please share them with the SAA Council, relevant component group leaders, or with me (firstname.lastname@example.org).
I hope you will take a look at the new Library of Congress Recommended Format Specifications. These specifications focus on both analog and digital acquisitions and recommend the best formats to use to collect items to insure preservation and access. You can learn more about these specifications from the National Digital Information Infrastructure Preservation Program’s Signal blog.
I’d also like to put in a plug for the Signal blog itself. It is full of information on digital preservation and includes interviews with digital pioneer and digital innovators and is written by some of the coolest people I know including this year’s winner of the Archival Innovator Award, Trevor Owens.
Happy reading and have a good weekend.
I have been in awe of all the comments following my post on the Archives and Archivists list. Now here is your opportunity to make comments. The committee studying the list (incoming SAA Vice President/President-Elect Dennis Meissner, new archives professional and SAA member Samantha Winn, long-time SAA and listserv member Christine Di Bella, and SAA Web and Information Systems Administrator Matt Black.) have put out a request for comments as well as a survey to learn more about list users. You can see their announcement and request for comments here.
Here is your opportunity to express your feelings about the Archives list. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by.
This post was written by council member Michelle Light with assistance from council member Tim Pyatt. I thank them and the other members of Council made suggestions for this post and who have responded to questions and concerns from section and roundtable leaders about forthcoming changes for the 2015 annual meeting.
In 2013 the SAA Annual Meeting Task Force submitted a thoughtful and forward thinking report that gave the Society a number of recommendations for improving our annual meeting. If you haven’t read the report, you should! Continue reading
This post was written by William “Butch” Lazorchak. Butch is a Digital Archivist for the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program at the Library of Congress. Continue reading
A special thank you to Guha Shankar and Butch Lazorchak for their assistance and thoughtful comments about this post.
As regular readers of this blog may remember back in September 2013 I spoke at the Cultural Heritage symposium sponsored by the American Folklife Center (AFC) at the Library of Congress. At the time I quoted Brian Cumer who noted that “archivists have an incredible opportunity to shape cultural heritage in the way we organize records, provide access to them and perform our role in helping to preserve the memory of events, groups and places and attitudes as well as other aspects that make up culture.” Little did I know that I was ignoring the role that folklorists and fieldworkers can play in determining what records archivists may work when they preserve materials gathered during fieldwork projects. Continue reading
I will admit that I used the National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections (NUCMC) long before I started working at the Library of Congress. It is a great way to locate information. Most of us now use ArchivesGrid, ArchiveFinder or one of many other resources to help users locate and gather information about the holdings at various repositories. Currently the program exists to provide service to very small institutions who do not have a lot of automation capacity and to support institutions that do not belong to OCLC or have other ways of contributing records to WorldCat or ArchivesGrid.
Peter Goodman, NUCMC Cataloger and member of the Cooperative and Instructional Programs Division of the Library of Congress provides additional information on NUCMC. I hope you will explore the NUCMC website and consider contributing to this important program. Continue reading