Digital Preservation

“We need to be rigorous in our experimentation, of course; we need to produce work of the highest quality and integrity, and ensure that our work is as carefully preserved as possible.”  (Fitzpatrick, p. 196)

I was very interested in the Preservation Section of Fitzpatrick’s book.  I have done a lot of research in this area – and every time it leaves me with a very overwhelming feeling.  The idea of preserving digital material is an enormous task that involves many players in the institution – librarians, archivists, administration, etc.   The research I partook in the past was directed towards digital preservation in an archive…(websites, emails, digitized archival material, etc).  I was familiar with LOCKSS and CLOCKSS, but really enjoyed reading Fitzpatrick’s section on the necessity of preserving scholarly e-journals, etc.

“We Have Never Done It That Way Before” mentality that Fitzpatrick describes will hopefully subside in the future from the assurance of  such systems as LOCKSS, which has the ability to preserve scholarly e-journals – most importantly after the library may cancel a subscription and/or if the journal ceases to exist.  This assurance, that the material being published electronically will not be lost in the World Wide Web or on technological advancement; will hopefully encourage the Academy to move forward from traditional forms of publishing and also towards peer-to-peer review.

I would also like to address that if peer-to-peer review on an online environment was to exist as a concrete practice of scholarly writing – I would argue that the final document published is just as important to preserve as the peer-to-peer review process, it would offer a unique dynamic in learning about the given topic from the academic community that is reviewing the material.

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