`The volume of information is growing at an unpreceden-
ted pace.We already produce more information per year than
we did in the whole period since we descended from the
trees. A lot of information is digital only and an XML docu-
ment, for instance, is created while you view it. So, how do
you keep it?'
Ulrich Kampffmeyer, President of Project Consult, Germany
roles of both creators and users in the production of
their work. He categorised the process as `work in
He said: `The programme maker adds input, the
journalist puts stuff in and they take it back out
again. I call that, because I come from an industrial
background, work in progress. Stuff also goes out
there to what we call clip sales so people are genera-
ting money out of this work in progress.
`IDENTIFY METHODS, TECHNOLOGIES'
orum Moderator, Hans Hofman, set the direc-
tion in the experts' search for technologies and
methods to ensure authenticity. `Are the cur-
rent information technologies able to achieve it? If
not, how should it be done and is there something
that should be done with standardisation?' he asked.
The BBC's Paul Fiander dropped in yet another
pressing concern ... costs. He detailed the broadca-
sting Corporation's holdings of radio and television
material, a collection growing exponentially as inter-
active television comes on stream. MPEG compression
compromised digital authenticity, he said, and
resource constraint was `forcing us to change our
selection and retention policy'.
So, another word entered the Forum debate ...
appraisal. Director of U.S. National Archives and
Records Administration (NARA) Electronic Records
Archives (ERA) Program, Kenneth Thibodeau, said it
was still the top criteria. Harking back to their earlier
discussion, he reminded the experts: `Once you say
that authenticity is contextual you cannot validly
pose the question "can technology save everything in
an authentic way?"'
Luciana Duranti believed the problem really lay
with creators who continued to `generate (records) in
an inappropriate way'. She complained: `Each record
generator creates records in an idiosyncratic way not
respecting the many of rules.They make things very
difficult for the preserver.' She wondered whether
the creator `is doing it because he is not interested in
permanent preservation or because he doesn't know
what he is supposed to do'.
The BBC's Paul Fiander demonstrated how the
Corporation solved the problem. In so doing, gave a
happy glimpse of the future for recordkeepers ... not
a place in the retirement sun but in the white heat of
the technologies mediating between creators and
users, just where the Forum thought they should be.
Paul Fiander drew a diagram of the BBC's produc-
tion process programme managers and journalists
making and using archivable material, fulfilling the
It goes many times because of the number of
channels we have.We have people taking material
out to recreate new stuff and they put it back in.
Finally, it goes out to playout.Where is the role of
the archivist in this?'
All over the place?
`Exactly!' said the Man from the BBC. Stabbing
the diagram's Media Asset Manager `cloud', he
emphasised: `The role of the archivist is there, except
we don't call them archivists anymore, because if you
called them archivists nobody would let them near
the place.We call them media managers.The skill of
the archivist is to work in this cloud over here,
because if they didn't do their job properly here, we
would never find the material again.'
An incredulous delegate asked: `Is this your day to
day reality or the future?'
Mr Fiander was firm. `That is what we are doing
today, we are putting people with library qualifications
into that cloud there, calling them media asset mana-
gers. I am talking about the archivist as the creator,
being involved in part of the creation process. That
is where the argument about changing making
the creator do something different is being taken
Paul Fiander's `Work in
Progress' workflow model
WORK IN PROGRESS
Media Asset Manager
Digital play out