Professional Development

Intro to Digital Preservation #1: “Preservation Planning and Overview of PREMIS for Beginners”

Friday, April 5, 2013 2:25 pm

On Tuesday, Lauren Corbett and I attended part one of a four part series of webinars on digital preservation hosted by ASERL. John Burger provided the introduction for the webinar and told us that the attendance was somewhere near five hundred, when normally the turnout for an ASERL webinar is about fifty. I guess that is a testament to the murky landscape of digital preservation! We were lucky enough to have Lisa Gregory of the State Library of North Carolina as the speaker for the first installment. I enjoyed her presentation immensely and especially appreciated her breakdown on how to get started and her encouragement to not be overwhelmed by the process. I will refrain from adding links and references in my post, as Gregory does that quite well in her materials. I encourage you to take a look at her slide deck and handout, she provides great resources and insight.

The presentation was broken into two sections. The first part on planning and first steps truly spoke to me and are applicable to my immediate work in our current digital preservation. The second section was a brief overview of PREMIS and how it applies once you have made inroads to digital preservation.

Slide from Lisa Gregory's presentation

Slide from Lisa Gregory's presentation

Lisa began the conversation by encouraging an assessment and inventory of all of the possible places your institution may have materials appropriate for digital preservation, including workstations, hard drives, removable media, content management systems, and mobile devices, to name a few. Her apt description of this as a “HOT MESS” helped to lighten the dread that the previous list had instilled. What followed was a concise and encouraging list of steps we can take to begin the very necessary.

The process begins with “Reconnoiter”-which Gregory describes as information gathering. She recommends reading current practices, successes, and implementations of digital preservation before getting started and after you have begun. This process, along with all of the following steps, are iterative and constantly changing. Digital preservation is a moving target and so is the literature to support it.

Following an understanding of strategies to implement digital preservation, Gregory suggests an “Assessment” of your digital content. Where is it hiding? Who is working with it? Make a list, a plan, a file naming system, and write it all down!

The assessment leads to “Documentation”-your policies, your plans, your best practices. She mentioned being transparent to your stakeholders and sharing workflows with involved parties. Again, this step is not a fixed point, and will need review regularly to keep up with changing materials, people, and strategies.

What is documentation without “Communication” the next step? Assessing and documenting does nothing unless you share those tools with users, administrators, and peers. Digital preservation is not happening in a vacuum, communications makes the process easier for everyone.

Finally, you have to “Implement” all of the steps into the “nitty-gritty” of digital preservation. There is a point where you just have to start. You have to consider storage, obsolete media, organization, workflows, and metadata when you begin (and continue) the process. What I found most helpful was the fact that Gregory said you don’t have to know it all or be perfect, you just have to start. Of course, laying the best groundwork will make you more successful, but she encouraged us to “do the research and just go for it.”

I look forward to the next three parts of the digital preservation webinars and am happy to have anyone join in on the sessions. Let me know if you’d like to sit-in or discuss the webinars.





4 Responses to “Intro to Digital Preservation #1: “Preservation Planning and Overview of PREMIS for Beginners””

  1. Digital preservation is such a tremendous challenge for archives and libraries, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the technology and format variety. I like the advice, “just do something,” even if it is not perfect.

  2. Excellent synopsis!

  3. Hot Mess = quite accurate!

  4. I didn’t attend the first session because I wasn’t sure of its relevance for me, but now I am sorry I missed it. I will try to attend future segments for sure. It sounds really interesting!

ALA Annual
ALA Midwinter
Career Development for Women Leaders
Carolina Consortium
CASE Conference
Celebration: Entrepreneurial Conference
Charleston Conference
Coalition for Networked Information
Digital Forsyth
Electronic Resources and Libraries
Elon Teaching and Learning Conference
Entrepreneurial Conference
Evidence Based Library and Information Practice (EBLIP)
Ex Libris Users of North America (ELUNA)
First-Year Experience Conference
Handheld Librarian
ILLiad Conference
Innovative Library Classroom Conference
Journal reading group
Leadership Institute for Academic Librarians
Library Assessment Conference
Lilly Conference
LITA National Forum
Mentoring Committee
Music Library Association
NCCU Conference on Digital Libraries
North Carolina Serials Conference
online course
Online Learning Summit
Open Repositories
Professional Development Center
Site Visits and Tours
Society of American Archivists
Society of North Carolina Archivists
Southeast Music Library Association
Sun Webinar Series
TALA Conference
UNC Teaching and Learning with Technology Conference
University Libraries Group
ZSR Library Leadership Retreat
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007

Powered by, protected by Akismet. Blog with