Meeting Minutes for 03/19/2019

Digital Archive Procedures Meeting Minutes
March 19, 2019
1:00 PM

Discussion for Best Practices or Procedures for the Digital Archives Group (Lead by Brandon)

  • Work on reforming the subcommittee that was created, but fell to the wayside
  • We have some documentation from the former group
  • John Major as a former subcommittee member spoke about the two primary objectives
    • 1. The former subcommittee was formed to come up with best practices for formating
      • Everyone would be supplying the same display name convention when making entities
      • This away everyone’s entities looked the same in terms of how they were titled
    • 2. The group also wanted to share some of the admin responsibilities with the Marmot folks
      • One responsibility would be the deletion of duplicates entities and that type of housekeeping
  • Brandon thinks going forward it would be great to have a subcommittee of administrators
    • To have an outline of what it takes to operate in the archives
    • Coming up with policies and procedures
    • Good to have documentation outlining how members need to structure content
    • The group agreed with Brandon’s approach to a subcommittee
  • Brandon pointed out that subcommittees or task forces are usually formed to focus on a short term goal.  
    • However, this type of subcommittee might be a longer standing group
    • Alysa pointed out that if we create a group of people who develop policies, procedures and documentation, that this sounds more like a standing committee as opposed to a task force.
      • Especially, if you are going to give this group extra admin rights that are not given to other members.
    • Alsya also views the archives like she would a as cataloger.  We agree to share the catalog in a specific way, and we do not edit each other records, but we are allowed to do a certain level of deduping.
    • Alysa asked Brandon how much of his admin work he wants to share with the group, and wondered who will be training the admins.  
    • Brandon responded that Marmot staff can handle maintaining and creating new collections, and the entity and object deletions.
    • Brandon thinks that Marmot staff could benefit from an admin level board when it comes to policies, procedures and direction that need to be enforced to make sure things run smoothly. If this board also thinks there are other tasks that Marmot staff could handle, this can be discussed as well.  
  • Alysa asked Brandon for clarification on this statement about opening up the Archives to other Institutions. She wondered if he was referring to Discovery Partners, or library local partners who would be trained by the library to add historical documentation?
    • Brandon replied that it would be a combination of subgroups who will add information into a library’s archive. He mentioned that Marmot already has some local Discovery Partners (AspenCat & Aurora) who are looking to join.
    • Brandon thinks it is great to get participation, but it needs to be something that is grown cautiously, so the archives do not become like a drop box.
  • Alysa asked if members of the archive if they feel confident in their ability to add content to the archives with the current level of documentation? Are there things that are missing?
    • Here are some questions that Alysa asked about documentation:
      • Do you know how each of the forms work?
      • Do you know what drives information in the OPAC?
      • Do you know how to format your entities titles?
      • Do you know to check the archives before adding content?
      • Do people feel like they have these procedures at their fingertips?
      • Alison asked about the correct format for adding dates.
        • John responded that he uses the format listed in Islandora for the date yyyy/mm/dd
      • Joy asked if the group should have training sessions during one of these meetings to see if we are on the same page with entities.
      • Selene would like to make sure she is not missing key points. It would be good to know what needs clarification.
      • Joy wants to know the difference between entities and LOC subjects.
      • Selene asked about the standards for naming objects.
      • Brandon responded that training can be added to a normal Digital Archives meeting.
      • Ashley asked Brandon if he has a curriculum or workflow that he uses with all new people he trains.
        • Brandon shows new people to the archives how to add an object.  He shows them the documentation, and references back to that documentation.  He primarily goes through the forms, and he primarily shows the Marmot Master Form. He shows all the required fields.
    • Ashley wondered if the subcommittee should focus on standardizing the training, so everyone is getting the same information.
      • Brandon did not have access to what his predecessor did as far as training, so he has built his own training based off information that his predecessor gave the Marmot staff.
    • Alysa mentioned that organizations struggle with documentation that is available through Islandora.  For example, Islandora has documentation that explain the LOC subject headings, but the documentation does not explain how they tie into the OPAC collection of physical materials.  LOC subject headings have a very powerful component in the digital archives as do entities. We really need to understand the intricacies about why you have to have subject headings as well as entities.    We need to know how things are connected, and what drives things in the archives.
  • Brandon asked who may be interested in joining the subcommittee
    • The following people volunteered to be on the subcommittee
      • Alysa Selby and John Major (Bud Werner)
      • Selene Gardener (Englewood)
      • Eric Prosser (Fort Lewis)
    • Brandon thinks it would be helpful to have a Marmot staff or a few Marmot staff involved in this committee to collect and document information. Also to participate in the documentation creation.


Discussion of Old Meeting Minutes from the Last Metadata Working Group (Lead by Brandon)

  • Meeting Minutes for 02/20/2018
  • Brandon asked the new subcommittee if the information for the meeting minutes still seemed relevant to the current goal
  • Alysa confirmed the information listed in the minutes is what they discussed.
    • Alysa added that the past group had some really long conversations about non-traditional places once they finished place entities.
    • One point of discussion with place entities is what happens when a river or mountain range spans more than one state or more than one county? How do we handle that place entity? This is what the non-traditional places was trying to cover.
  • Ashley asked if it would be helpful to have a glossary or a list of good standards for things? What it be too much work to maintain that type of list?
  • Alysa replied that it was more about coming up with rules about how entities are formatted.
    • The group wanted to come up with standards that when you saw Eagle County, Colorado, you knew it was a place entity.  However, if you just called it Eagle, that could have been a place, a name or a bird.
    • The group was trying to come up with a format that was more like a MARC format , so that people knew how to enter the data correctly.
  • John mentioned that this type of formatting was also supposed to clarify if the item was a duplicate, or the same named place in a different county.
  • Alysa mentioned that bringing in more members we have to think about standards for handling entities, so this is why we really need to create a guide to help people make good decisions.
  • Alysa mentioned that anyone can add, edit and amend entities.  The group wanted to make sure that when someone created an entity that is was at a level that would enrich the catalog, and that everyone could identify and use this type of enrichment.
  • Alysa remembers the past group discussing what notes could be put into entities.  For example, you would not put a local note in an entity, because the entity is shared among multiple objects across institutions.
  • John mentioned that the former group was not able to really get a handle on pinpointing of places when they go through multiple states or areas.
    • If you attach a GeoName record to the Yampa River place entity, for whatever reason the GeoNames defaulted to the next confluence that body of water has with the next larger body of water. The group was discussing the Yampa River as it related to Routt County, but the GeoName marker put it out in Utah where it links up to the Green River.
    • The group wanted to figure out a way to create these places with map information that is relative to the place they are entering.
    • When you are talking about something that is not human made,  geographical places (like water and mountain ranges), it was an unresolved issue for the group.
  • Alysa mentioned that to remain neutral the group decided to go use the Geo marker for whatever site they were using to get Geo markers for places (for example, Google maps). The place entities documentation they created had a couple of pages full of examples.
  • Alysa and John mentioned the former group had finished entity work for places and organizations.  They were starting on people.
  • Selene asked if there were standards for naming objects
    • Alysa replied that the focus for the group was on entities and not objects.  With the idea that objects are unique to your institution, and how you name them was specific to your project .
    • This group might be useful when you add an audio object, the fields can be explained as to what they do in the OPAC, so people really understand how their metadata works. For example, if you format the information on the form a certain way, it will display in the OPAC a certain way.
  • Action Item: Brandon will contact EVLD to find out if Lacy’s Google account can either be reactivated, or check to see if they still have access to her documentation.  Once we have this documentation, ownership will be switch to Marmot.
  • Action Item: Brandon will create an email group for the subgroup. He will send an email to the full group to let everyone know that the subgroup has started.  Also, he will offer that anyone who did not attend the meeting may join this subgroup.


Meeting Date: 
Tuesday, 2019, March 19
Documentation Type: