Personal Archiving: Preserving Our Digital Heritage

Personal Archiving Preserving Our Digital HeritageA few months back, I published a chapter in a new book called Personal Archiving: Preserving Our Digital Heritage, edited by Donald Hawkins. My chapter, Digital inheritance: tackling the legal and practical issues, addressed the current challenges around passing your digital assets to your heirs. Tom Wilson, editor of Information Research, had this to say about my chapter:

One chapter that ought to be of interest to most is Evan Carroll’s, Digital inheritance: tackling the legal and practical issues. Anyone holding any form of personal archive, which he or she believes may be of interest in the future needs to understand how to deal with digital assets in their will, so that after their death the resources are either put to the use the originator wishes, or bequeathed to someone who has undertaken to receive and preserve them. The legal issues are dealt with in terms of US Federal and State law, but the principles, I think, will be valid anywhere. At present, a key question must be, What happens to all my pictures on Flickr (or Facebook, or whatever) when I die? Most social networking sites and most photography sites do not have any procedures in place (to my knowledge) regarding the preservation of material when the subscriber is dead. Perhaps this book will raise greater interest in persuading such sites that they need to consider the question.

The entire book is an important collection of research and perspectives from some of the most respected digital archivists and researchers. If you’re interested at all in the future or personal archiving, I’d encourage you to read what these experts have to say. Below is a detailed outline of the chapters:

Brewster Kahle, Internet Archive

Donald T. Hawkins

Chapter 1
Personal Digital Archives: What They Are, What They Could Be, and Why They Matter
Jeff Ubois, MacArthur Foundation

Chapter 2
Personal Archiving for Individuals and Families
Danielle Conklin, Cotton Gloves Research

Chapter 3
The Library of Congress and Personal Digital Archiving
Mike Ashenfelder, Library of Congress

Chapter 4
Software and Services for Personal Archiving
Donald T. Hawkins

Chapter 5
Digital Inheritance: Tackling the Legal and Practical Issues
Evan Carroll, The Digital Beyond

Chapter 6
Social Media, Personal Data, and Reusing Our Digital Legacy
Catherine C. Marshall, Microsoft Research, Silicon Valley

Chapter 7
Reading Ben Shneiderman’s Email: Identifying Narrative Elements in Email Archives
Jason Zalinger, University of South Florida,
Nathan G. Freier, Microsoft Corporation, and
Ben Shneiderman, University of Maryland

Chapter 8
Faculty Members as Archivists: Personal Archiving Practices in the Academic Environment
Ellysa Stern Cahoy, The Pennsylvania State University Libraries

Chapter 9
Landscape of Personal Digital Archiving Activities and Research
Sarah Kim, University of Texas at Austin

Chapter 10
Active Personal Archiving and the Internet Archive
Aaron Ximm, Internet Archive

Chapter 11
Our Technology Heritage
Richard Banks, Microsoft Research, Cambridge, U.K.

Chapter 12
New Horizons in Personal Archiving: 1 Second Everyday, myKive, and MUSE
Donald T. Hawkins
Christopher J. Prom, University of Illinois
Peter Chan, Stanford University

Chapter 13
The Future of Personal Digital Archiving: Defining the Research Agendas
Clifford Lynch, Coalition for Networked Information



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