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Taking a Census and Prioritizing Media Collections for Preservation Mike Casey Director of Technical Operations Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative.

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Presentation on theme: "Taking a Census and Prioritizing Media Collections for Preservation Mike Casey Director of Technical Operations Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative."— Presentation transcript:


2 Taking a Census and Prioritizing Media Collections for Preservation Mike Casey Director of Technical Operations Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative

3 Flickr @garry Degralescence Attacks the Kingdom of Media

4 Degradation/Obsolescence How much time do we have? 10-15 Years


6 The Suspected Problem Large but unknown number of media objects Known degradation Known high research value Urgency of digitization

7 The Goal Both quantitative and qualitative dataaccurate, detailed, comprehensive Accurate numbers Data on condition and preservation problems Data on formats for obsolescence analysis Specific information on research valuewhy are holdings important? Stories demonstrating risk and value

8 The Plan Web-Based Survey Form? Not comprehensivelow response rate Not accurateexpert help needed to identify formats, diagnose problems, etc. Survey of percentage not detailed enough Hard to elicit anecdotal informationstories of value and use of holdings

9 The Plan In-Person Interview 1-3 hour interview Series of questions Advance prep by large units Inspection of holdings Led to discovery of previously unknown holdings and formats

10 The Plan In-Person Interview Heart of IVquestions for each format –Numbers of unique, rare and commercial –Backups –Dates –Preservation problems

11 The Plan Inspection Help with counting Identification of problems and risk factors Evaluation of storage Photographs

12 The Plan Data Storage OneNote Access Database

13 The Discovered Problem Large Numbers Degradation Obsolescence Short Time Window

14 Numbers More than 560,000 audio, video, film objects –364,000 audio (64%) –125,000 video (22%) –78,000 film (14%)

15 Numbers African American Arts Institute African Studies Program Anthropology, Department of Archaeology, Glenn Black Laboratory of Archives of African American Music and Culture Archives of Traditional Music Art Museum Astronomy, Department of Bands, Department of (Jacobs School of Music) Basketball, Men's (Athletics Dept.) Basketball, Women's (Athletics Dept.) Black Film Center Archive Business/SPEA Information Commons (IUBL) Center for Disability Information and Referral Center for Language Technology and Instructional Enrichment Center for Languages of the Central Asian Region Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies Center for the Documentation of Endangered Languages Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior Center for the Study of Global Change Center for the Study of History and Memory Center on Aging and Community Central Eurasian Studies Chemistry Library (IUBL) Communication and Culture, Department of Creole Institute East Asian Studies Center Education Library (IUBL) Elizabeth Sage Historic Costume Collection Eppley Institute for Parks and Public Lands Field Hockey (Athletics Dept.) Fine Arts Library (IUBL) Folklore and Ethnomusicology, Department of Football (Athletics Dept.) Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Student Support Services Library Geography and Map Library (IUBL) Geology Library (IUBL) Golf (Athletics Dept.) Government Information, Microforms, and Statistical Services (IUBL) Health, Physical Education, and Recreation (HPER) Library (IUBL) I. U. Foundation Indiana Prevention Resource Center Inner Asian and Uralic National Resource Center Institute for Advanced Study Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction Latin American Music Center Latino Cultural Center (La Casa) Law Library Liberian Collections Project Life Sciences Library (IUBL) Lilly Library (IUBL) Linguistics Club Mathers Museum of World Cultures Media and Reserve Services (IUBL) Media Design and Production Modern Political Papers (IUBL) Music Library, William and Gayle Cook Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center Library (IUBL) Optometry Library (IUBL) Optometry, School of Polish Studies Center Psychological and Brain Sciences, Department of Radio and Television Services Recording Arts, Department of (Jacobs School of Music) Residential Programs and Services Libraries Rowing (Athletics Dept.) Roy W. Howard Archive Russian and East European Institute Soccer, Men's (Athletics Dept.) Softball (Athletics Dept.) Sound And Video Analysis & Instruction Laboratory Swain Hall Library (IUBL) Tennis, Men's (Athletics Dept.) Theatre and Drama, Department of Traditional Arts Indiana Unclaimed Collection #2 (Franklin Hall Attic) University Archives (IUBL) University Communications, Office of Video Production (Athletics Dept.) Volleyball, Women's (Athletics Dept.) West European Studies Film Library

16 Numbers Top 12 by (estimated) Number of Objects Music Library195,596 Archives of Traditional Music98,431 Media and Reserve Services (IUB Libraries)80,529 Radio and Television Services43,893 Residential Programs and Services Libraries26,075 Kinsey Institute20,183

17 Numbers Top 12 by (estimated) Number of Objects Center for Language Technology and Instructional Enrichment (CeLTIE)13,567 University Archives12,086 Lilly Library11,361 Archives of African American Music and Culture8,031 Media Design and Production6,549 Black Film Center Archive5,499

18 Numbers 44% Unique or Rare 56% Commercial (248,000)

19 Numbers Top 10 by Unique Objects Music Library55,577 Archives of Traditional Music31,562 Radio and Television Services19,453 University Archives11,270 Media Design and Production6,492

20 Numbers Top 10 by Unique Objects Athletics Video Production4,504 Kinsey Institute3,514 Center for the Study of History and Memory3,323 Lilly Library2,653 Office of University Communications2,584

21 Numbers Open reel tape Analog, audio cassette tape Microcassette DAT (Digital Audio Tape) Lacquer disc Aluminum disc Commercial 78 rpm disc Commercial LP disc Commercial 45 rpm disc Wire recording Cylinder recording CD (Compact Disc) CD-R Fidelipac (audio tape cartridge) Minicassette Soundscriber Audiotape Audograph Disc Eight Track Tape Metal Parts DA78/88 tapes SVHS (digital audio) 1" open reel videotape VHS SVHS Betamax U-matic Hi-8 8 mm videotape Betacam Betacam SP Digital Betacam DVCAM MiniDV VCD DVD Laserdisc DVD-R DV videotape Betamax (Sony PCM-F1 digital audio) IMX XDCAM HDCAM DVC Pro 2" Quadruplex videotape 1/2" open reel videotape Film Cartridge 3" tape strips 3M Projector Recorder Cartridge Film--8 mm Film--16 mm Film--35 mm Film -- Super 8 mm

22 Numbers Formats Oldest recordings: 1893 cylinders in the Archives of Traditional Music Newest unique recordings: digital files held by Traditional Arts Indiana, Music Library, Radio/TV, CDEL, CELCAR, Eppley Institute, Golf

23 Degradation/Obsolescence in the mid- to long-term there is a major risk that carrier degradation combined with playback obsolescence will defeat the efforts of archivists… --International Association of Sound and Audiovisual Archives An estimated 180,000 media items held by IUB are at high or very high risk for loss of content

24 Degradation Problems Related to Formats Lacquer disc delamination Open reel tape risk factors including Sticky Shed Syndrome Vinegar Syndrome Cylinder efflorescence Cellulose acetate bases Fungus

25 Degradation Problems Related to Formats Error rates on recordable CDs Binder failure on ½ open reel video Color fading on film U-matic deterioration MiniDV playback problems

26 Degradation IUB Collections Lacquer discs ATM4,663. Music Library2,200 Open reel tape Music Library61,536 (53% with risk factors). ATM17,701 (48-55%) Cellulose acetate film vast majority. Vinegar Syndrome in Bradley and Bogdanovich collections Color film estimated 24,000 reels/cores U-matic 9,310 tapes in University Archives, Media Design and Production, Athletics Video Production, Communication and Culture, Kinsey, CEDIR








34 Degradation Environmental Conditions Temperature and RH most important factors in slowing physical deterioration + Room temperature conditions lead to significant damage over time + 95% of IUB holdings in room temperature conditions + Media formats degrade much more rapidly than paper = storage of media in ALF-like conditions

35 Degradation Environmental Conditions Estimated time before serious degradation of acetate film: Room temperature conditions 30-40 years ALF-like conditions on the order of 300 years!



38 Obsolescence Media formats Equipment (playback machines, test devices) Repair parts Playback expertise Repair expertise Tools Supplies

39 Obsolescence No professional analog audio cassette machines Only one semi-pro open reel tape machine in very limited quantities Audio alignment tapesone company Quad (video) machines, parts, playback expertise very scarce 1 video machines, parts, playback expertise scarce

40 Obsolescence U-matic manufacturing ceased mid-90s Digital Audio Tape (DAT) manufacturing ceased 2005small base of installed machines, heavily used, hard to repair, little repair expertise Betacam SP manufacturing ceased 2001, large installed base but parts only from Japan VHS ceased 2008, many machines for now…

41 Obsolescence IUB Collections Open reel tape 90,022 Analog, audio, cassette tape 26,300 DAT 6,559 VHS 53,909 U-matic 9,310 tapes Betacam SP 23,084

42 Strategies Audio and Video Preservation transfer (digitize) What % of IUB holdings are digitized? 8%

43 Selection Process Who Patrick Feaster Mike Casey Advisory group

44 Degradation/Obsolescence How much time do we have? 10-15 years Less for some formats Degradation + Obsolescence = Impossible/Too Expensive If we start now…

45 What is Indiana University Doing to Weather this Storm? Flickr @garry

46 State of the University address October 1, 2013 Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative (MDPI) Flickr @garry

47 State of the University address October 1, 2013 Digitization of all significant audio and video recordings IU digitization master plan for all research collections Flickr @garry


49 Why Prioritize? Recommendation 2.2: Appraisal of Audio Collections for Preservation Devise means to assist collection managers in conducting comprehensive appraisals of audio holdings with the goal of establishing priorities for preservation. --The Library of Congress National Recording Preservation Plan, page 21

50 Why Prioritize? 560,000+ media objects Known degradationlimited time window Known obsolescence issueslimited time window Known high (and low) research value Political reasons No guarantees with funding, the economy, will Not everything can/will be preserved

51 What is Prioritization? Related to appraisal For preservation services (digitization)selection for preservation Content review: assess research and instructional value Technical/condition review: evaluate condition and risk

52 Data Collection Research Value Score Condition/Risk Score Combined Score Collection Ranking Curatorial Review Selection for Preservation/Prioritization Ranking

53 Research Value Value of media collections Research value Instructional value Experiential value Production value

54 Research Value MediaRIVERS Media Research and Instructional Value Evaluation and Ranking System Developed by NEH-funded Sound Directions Project and MPI Campus stakeholder group: Music Library, University Archives, Lilly Library, Archives of Traditional Music, AAAMC, Digital Library Program

55 Research Value MediaRIVERS Points-based scoring system Benefits from curatorial-level knowledge and expertise

56 MediaRIVERS Manuscripts antecedents Historical Society of Pennsylvania Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries Columbia University University of Virginia Mellon-funded

57 MediaRIVERS Scored categories Subject interest Content quality Rareness Documentation Technical quality

58 MediaRIVERS Tracked categories Generation Intellectual property issues

59 MediaRIVERS Research Value Rating Scale 4.5-5 = Collection has exceptional research, instructional, or experiential value. It is a top priority 3.5-4.4 = Collection has high value and is a high priority 2.5-3.4 = Collection has moderate value

60 MediaRIVERS Research Value Rating Scale 1.5-2.4 = Collection has minor value 0-1.4 = Collection has no value or minimal value and is a very low priority

61 MediaRIVERS Subject Interest How much actual or potential interest is there in the topics/subjects documented by the collection? Includes significance, importance of creative works, experiential potential, past use, local value, functional value Historical, political, cultural importance, for example

62 MediaRIVERS Content Quality How thoroughly or substantially does the collection document its topics or subjects? Consider extensiveness, detail, thoroughness, comprehensiveness

63 MediaRIVERS Rareness To what extent is the documentation of topics/subjects rare or unique? Are there other sources of information that could substitute for it?

64 MediaRIVERS Documentation How substantial and appropriate is the supporting documentation? Basic: Identification of persons Complementary documentation that aids interpretation and enhances value Field notes, transcripts, essays, booklets, photographs, etc.

65 MediaRIVERS Technical Quality How well recorded or filmed is the collection? Some uses of media benefit from high fidelity

66 MediaRIVERS Generation A class of objects that developed from a common ancestor Originals or copies in the collection? Originals present a higher quality source for preservation work

67 MediaRIVERS Intellectual Property What IP issues restrict collections use, if any? Copyright law, donor restrictions, ethical issues, etc.

68 MediaRIVERS


70 Condition/risk Preservation issues--degradation Condition Obsolescence Characteristics that impact risk

71 Condition/risk All analog and physical digital objects actively degrading –some catastrophically Vinegar Syndrome Sticky Shed Syndrome Fungus Delamination Plasticizer Exudation Color Fading Curling Windowing Shedding Undiagnosed Unplayability Mechanical IssuesShrinkage Scratches Breaking Hydrolysis Oxidation Efflourescence Binder BreakdownCupping Crystalline Residue

72 Condition/risk Risk/Stability: Cellulose acetate base Plasticizer exudation on lacquer disc Half mil tape

73 MediaSCORE Media Selection: Condition, Obsolescence, and Risk Evaluation Developed by MPI with AudioVisual Preservation Solutions (AVPS) Audio and video formats

74 MediaSCORE Collection-level assessment Collection Number: 66-097-F Shelf numbers: EC 1210-1275 Australia, N. Queensland, Australian Aborigines. LaMont West, 1964- 1965. 66 sound tape reels : analog, 7 1/2 ips, full track, mono. ; 7 in. Recorded 1964-1965 by West in N. Queensland, primarily at Cape York. Deposited at the Archives of Traditional Music in 1966 by West under option 1.






80 MediaSCORE Points Format obsolescence – add points Preservation problems – add Characteristics impacting stability – add Presence of copies – deduct

81 MediaSCORE Scale 4.5-5: Extreme danger-digitize immediately Im begging my director for money tomorrow 3.5-4.49: Danger ahead-digitize near-term Im writing a grant in the next year 2.5-3.49: Caution, moderate risk-digitize soon Im actively planning for digitization

82 MediaSCORE Scale 1.5-2.49: Lower priority, digitize medium term 0.6-1.49: Low priority, digitize within 10-15 years 0-0.5: Safe, not in need of digitization

83 Selection Process Curatorial Review Publicity needs Timelinessanniversaries, events Access restrictions and donor agreements Current technical capabilities Final selection decisions

84 Selection Process Who SMART Media Preservation Specialist

85 Challenges Scale MediaRIVERS doesnt scale for large holdings –Time intensive, needs curator time –Analysis of broad classes of holdings MediaSCORE can scale –Expertise from outside the unit

86 Challenges Priority Memnon requires homogenous batches by technical characteristics –Reality of industrial process and parallel transfer workflows IU wishes to preserve highest value holdings – Overlay value decisions onto technical base –Value within format, take away low value

87 Challenges Level MediaSCORE is collection-level –Batch management is object-level –Translation and interpretation needed ATM solution – cataloged at collection-level Music Library solution – cataloged at object-level

88 Taking a Census and Prioritizing Media Collections for Preservation Mike Casey Director of Technical Operations Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative

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