As cochair of the DPLA Content and Scope workstream, I am
honored to be one of many who are contributing time and effort toward building
a community, a conversational framework, and ultimately a distributed network
of digital content free to all. This summer has been busy for DPLA. In addition
to transitioning from a planning activity to a free-standing nonprofit
organization, there has been a lot of activity around building the digital instance
of the DPLA.
The Digital Library Federation program sponsored a think
tank meeting on June 15, which gave DLF community members an opportunity to
engage with the DPLA technical development team and provide feedback on the
DPLA technical plan. At the meeting it was determined that the DLF could play a
valuable role in providing structured opportunities for the DLF community to
participate in the DPLA conversation and development. Watch for future
opportunities later this fall.
The DPLA Audience and Participation workstream met in July
at the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore to discuss DPLA use cases.
Winston Tabb, Sheridan Dean of University Libraries at Johns Hopkins, was one
of many workshop attendees who contributed to a useful discussion about how the
use cases highlight service and content needs for the DPLA, as well as
opportunities for advocacy and policy discussion regarding fair use and
copyright. Nate Hill (@natenatenate) adeptly facilitated the workshop; notes
from the workshop are here.
In July, NEH awarded the DPLA $1 million to support the
“content-hub” pilot. This
pilot project will test the distributed network model for recruiting,
harvesting, and providing access to digital collections metadata. Six to seven
“hubs” representing various organizational and service models, as well as
geographic regions, will work through policy, workflow, and other challenges to
help inform the blueprint for a national content network. This will allow us to
explore the benefits of working at scale, as well as to identify incentives for
Emily Gore (@ncschistory), a Frye Institute alumna who is
currently the AUL for technology at Florida State University, has been named
the Director of Content for DPLA and will begin her term on September 1.
On August 6, the Content and Scope workstream hosted a
meeting in San Diego. The
meeting’s goal was to work through data provider agreements and expectations of
services for DPLA content hubs, as well as to discuss what can DPLA do
differently to avoid being, in the words of Dan Chudnov (@dchud) of George
Washington University, “yet another aggregation.”
Past attempts to build large-scale digital collections
have often been hindered by policy, process, and technology. How can we do
things differently, in a way that ultimately moves the cart forward on this
issue, and can yield big wins not just for the digital library community, but
also for the communities we serve? This was the lead-off discussion for the
August 6 Content and Scope workshop.
Among the ideas discussed:
What are your ideas?
Notes and other documents resulting from this meeting will
be posted soon on the Content and Scope Workstream page. And,
as always, comments and contributions are welcome at any time. This is an open
community effort, driven by those who make the time to contribute. The DPLA is crafted not to be a top-down
organization, but as an emergent community effort. The success of the DPLA
depends on us.