SPEC Kit 329: Managing Born-Digital Special Collections and Archival Materials · 81
using the material. The Virtual Reading Room is providing a layer of risk mitigation by doing three things: 1) It shows
that our intent is to provide access for educational, personal, or research purposes only, just like we have always done
for similar, analog materials in our reading room. 2) It makes use of the material conditional upon users agreeing to only
use the material for educational, personal, or research purposes. 3) It shifts some of the accountability for violating fair
use to the user.
Providing interfaces to allow users to set access controls, and managing access to non-public items in various systems.
The variety of formats and complex objects that require special user interface programming. Displaying complex objects
in search results.
Restrictions: our digital asset management system is designed to be used by all units on campus, not just Libraries/
Archives. Restrictions will have to be able to be applied at unit, user, item, and collection levels. Libraries IT staff is
currently working on enabling this function of the system. Archival context: while our digital content resides in our
digital asset management system, archival descriptions are located in ICA-AtoM. Libraries is planning on linking the
two systems together to demonstrate the provenancial and archival context of the digital items. Metadata creation: all
metadata linked to digital content is created by contract digitization technicians. While the Libraries has been successful
in acquiring funding for this very important task, there is no baseline funding in the Libraries budget for this type of
metadata creation.
Sensitive data: we have yet to work out issues surrounding born-digital institutional records with restricted access, e.g.,
promotion &tenure files, president’s office files, etc. Graduate school policy resists open access to electronic theses and
dissertations in the institutional repository.
The basic issue of how to provide access, particularly for things that are copied to our server since that is not publicly
accessible. Address is by providing access on CD or flash drive, but that requires much advance work before the patron
comes. For the few collections we have that have digital content, determining and then conveying to patrons now
through description what we have in analog format vs. digital format, or in both analog and digital. In practice, we
provide varying levels of description about the digital content and do not always go to the extent to determine what we
have in digital form vs. analog. Easily generating file lists: WordPerfect used to do this easily, Word does not.
There are concerns about our ability to provide copies of our digital content without violating copyright. We are currently
reviewing existing donor agreements to evaluate what rights we have. Discovery of our digital materials is poor. EAD
does not lend itself well to describing the digital materials and we do not have a metadata browse/search/discovery tool
that permits a combination of item-level and aggregate description. There are concerns regarding our ability to provide
original files v. derivative versions (due to redaction and/or migration) and informing potential users about both/either
of the options.
Theses and dissertations: copyright issues. This is partly addressed by providing embargo options for our theses and
Training for staff on how to arrange and describe born-digital materials. We are working to bring appropriate training
to the library and to our region. Managing collections with personal identifiable information. We are trying to determine
what the best strategy is for providing access to these materials and don’t have a good answer. Managing user rights for
restricted collections. We are investigating this as part of our Rosetta pilot project.
Unclear copyright status verifying copyright status!!! Metadata arrangements need more standardization. How to
effectively integrate into basic discovery systems.
We continue to look at methods of display for special materials (such as newer file formats, book reader (page turner)
and also incorporating other metadata to support these materials (TEI, MODS). Copyright: certain materials in the
institutional repository are only available with university credentials due to copyright issues.
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