Have Your Say: Revising the Digitization Strategy

Today’s post comes from Markus Most, Director of the Digitization Division at the National Archives.

In September 2007, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) requested public input on a Draft Plan for Digitizing Archival Materials. Incorporating feedback from the public, NARA issued the Strategy for Digitizing Archival Materials for Public Access, 2007-2016 in May 2008. The strategy has served NARA well: the online catalog has over 2 million digital objects, the public has access to over 235 million images, and there were over 1.2 billion views of NARA content on Wikipedia in FY13.

Digital Equipment Machines, 1964
We’re updating our Digitization Strategy – have your say! (National Archives Identifier 3493265)

Since the strategy was published six years ago, there have been rapid advances in many areas including social media, crowdsourcing, and our understanding of access. It is critical that our digitization strategy build on our successes, but also incorporate and take advantage of these changes. NARA is revising its digitization strategy and is asking for input from you to make sure our strategy is current.

Using the existing strategy as a starting place, what changes would you make? The current strategy is available here: http://www.archives.gov/digitization/strategy.html

Some of the areas we are considering include:

  • Expanding partnerships beyond digitization of paper and microfilm;
  • Encouraging public engagement in digitizing and describing our records;
  • Creating additional streams of digitized content into our online catalog; and
  • Non-traditional sources of funding.

Post your suggestions on this blog post, or email digitization@nara.gov. Please send us your suggestions by June 30, 2014.

3 thoughts on “Have Your Say: Revising the Digitization Strategy

  1. Before all of our WW II veterans are gone, I would like to see NARA digitize Operational Records of the U.S. Army in the war, specifically Reading Group 7. Particularly useful would be General Orders at Division level, which contain, for instance, awards of Purple Hearts, Bronze Stars, etc.

  2. It is good that NARA has launched the project of digitizing paper and microfilmed documents. But I could not help admiring that this project is not incorporated in the ERA, and that even the ERA does not care about permanent digital media and the possibility to render, in the distant future, the documents created in the past. If I decided to be malicious I could compare this to a circus acrobat jumping from a great height into a network that has yet to be completed prior to his landing.

    In order to be more constructive I would suggest to set up a closer cooperation between the NARA and OASIS because archiving of the space digital images is beyond the scope of classic archivy, and in turn the OASIS is willing to cooperate with each interested archive.

    Also, someone, maybe again the OASIS, should initiate closer cooperation with research and development institutions in the field of nanotechnology, as my profound belief is that the nanotechnology is the best candidate for the solution of 3D compact solid state media and memories.

  3. Until they update all archives and bring them into the cloud – you still will need to find county clerk’s records through their local offices. http://www.county-clerks.com just updated all 3,200+ county clerk listings for USA. Verified!

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