Preservation News

Jane Hedberg

Guide to digitization

Preparing Collections for Digitization is a how-to-manual that places digitization in the context of collection management. Written by Anna E. Bülow, head of preservation, and Jess Ahmon, preservation officer, at The National Archives (UK), the 184-page handbook describes the practical preservation issues involved in digitizing library and archives collections. It covers what to consider before you digitize; understanding the basic concepts, specifications, and standards for digital images; selecting items and collections; surveying collections; equipping an image capture operation; preparing documents for safe imaging; treating damaged documents; and setting up an imaging operation.

The book is available for £40.46 from the National Archives Bookstore at or for approximately $100 from U.S. vendors. ISBN: 9781856047111.

WESTPAS workshops

The Western States and Territories Preservation Assistance Service (WESTPAS) will offer 31 free workshops in 2011–12 thanks to an NEH grant award. The workshops will cover writing and testing plans for disaster response and collection salvage. They will be offered to 600 staff members from 300 small libraries and archives in the 14 Western and Pacific states and territories that WESTPAS serves.

For those in other states, the WESTPAS Web site has a free taped version of the earlier two-day workshop, “Protecting Library and Archive Collections: Disaster Preparedness, Response and Recovery,” given in Richmond, California, in 2009.

For more information and the schedule of upcoming workshops, go to

LC video presentations

The Library of Congress (LC) has two new titles in its online collection of digital preservation videos. “Archiving Digital Audio” with Peter Alyea runs just over 15 minutes and contains practical advice about preserving personal audio collections.

“Preserving Personal Web Content” with Abigail Grotke and Gina Jones runs just over eight minutes and offers practical tips for organizing and preserving personal Web sites, blogs, social networking information, music, etc. Both presentations were recorded May 10, 2010, during LC’s Personal Archiving Day.

The URL for all LC’s video presentations is

Digitizing home movies

The Center for Home Movies held the “Home Movie Digitization and Access Summit” at the National Audio-Visual Conservation Center in Culpeper, Virginia, September 22–24, 2010. The Summit considered the technical and legal issues involved in digitizing amateur film and video, the role of cataloging and description in providing access to it, and the impact significantly increased online access to home movies would have on home movie makers, families, researchers, documentary filmmakers, and the public. More than 40 invited participants discussed what would be needed to undertake such a mass digitization project. A 126-page final report, published in January 2011, includes background documents, texts of the presentations, and summaries of the discussions.

The final report is available as a free PDF at For more information about the summit, contact Dwight Swanson at E-mail: .

Copyright 2011© American Library Association

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