Posts Tagged ‘value’

Going online anyone?

 
At the Museums Australia conference in Newcastle last month I had the privilege of talking freely with colleagues in the museum sector about what was exciting and concerning them about making collection information available online.
 
Some really important issues and interests arose and I’d like to share some of them in brief with you.
 
Robert Landsdown, Museum of Human Disease and I spoke about the ethics of making collection information available online. Without much imagination it is clear that the museum Robert works in holds some sensitive collection material and the ethical issues with privileging access to that collection are many.
 

 
Robert really provoked my thinking, and I carried on that conversation with a colleague Dion Peita working with the anthropology collection at the Australian Museum this morning over coffee and learned that the museum has gone live today with its new website design – take a look!
 
Belinda Nemec, Cultural Collections, University of Melbourne and I spoke about how to work through rights issues with collections of digitised materials aggregated for one purpose but with potential for repurposing for an online audience.
 

 
Liz Marsden, Victoria Police Museum & Historical Unit and I spoke about looking for opportunities to work across the sector and determine standards for collection description that reflect the curatorial scope of the collections being managed, e.g. law enforcement.
 

 
I speculated wildly with Sarah about the potential for historical law enforcement and convict related information to be presented online together reflecting upon Christine Yeates comments in the CAN interview posted on the Outreach blog about the rich historical government resources managed in state archives.
 
Lastly, a brief chat with Edith Cuffe, Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology about the realities of collecting organisations going online with their collections that use satellite or dialup and are outside the broadband reach.
 

 
There is real potential there to use CAN to make collections available but seems a continued need to lobby for extensive broadband access. Aspects of the ‘digital divide’ are definitely still on the radar in real terms and not just financial terms.
 
Plenty to think about and plenty of opportunities to learn from each other…

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