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Personal Archiving: Multi-Authored Book Offers the First Broad Exploration of the Emerging Field of Personal Digital Archiving

For Immediate Release
Contact: Rob Colding
Information Today, Inc.
(609) 654-6266, ext. 330
[email protected]

October 22, 2013, Medford, New Jersey—Information Today, Inc. (ITI) announced the publication, in print and ebook editions, of Personal Archiving:Preserving Our Digital Heritage, edited by Donald T. (Don) Hawkins with a foreword by Brewster Kahle.

Hawkins explained that while libraries, museums, historical societies, and other cultural institutions have traditionally borne primary responsibility for archiving culturally significant creative works, information, and artifacts, advances in digitization, data storage, and retrieval technologies now allow the average person to build his own robust personal archive. The result has been the emergence of a new breed of archivist who uses low-cost and, in many cases, free digital tools and services to create enduring archives of personal and familial legacy materials—in essence, to preserve his digital heritage.

In Personal Archiving, Hawkins and 15 expert contributors present the most thorough exploration of the emerging field to date, addressing a range of key topics and innovative projects, including: archiving individual and family histories; new and nascent services and software products; social media and email applications; legal issues including digital inheritance and privacy; evolving formats and media considerations; academic research projects; Library of Congress initiatives; the pioneering role of the Internet Archive; research at Microsoft; and case studies of personal digital archiving in practice.

“This thorough examination of the world of digital archiving is an excellent resource for anyone, personally or professionally, who is responsible for preserving their personal and collective stories,” said Cherilyn P. Fiory, director of the Upper Dublin (PA) Public Library. “It emphasizes the importance of capturing and preserving our stories and the resulting complications, particularly since the digital realm is so impermanent.”

“This timely book brings together various approaches to the digitization, collecting, preservation, and presentation of personal archives,” according to Kahle, digital librarian and founder of the Internet Archive. “Excitement is growing as researchers learn from one other and welcome the type of sharing culture that comes before commercial players enter a field. Pioneering user interfaces are being proposed for existing digital collections, and methods are being developed that would collect our digital legacy from websites and services. As new approaches and products emerge in this young and increasingly critical field, we have much to look forward to. Personal Archiving is a great place to begin the journey.”

Editor Donald T. Hawkins is a writer, blogger, speaker, and long-time information industry observer whose distinguished career included 15 years in the AT&T Bell Laboratories Library Network, where he was honored for his pioneering contributions in end-user searching. He is the author of hundreds of articles and a two-time winner of the UMI/Data Courier Award for excellence in writing.

Personal Archiving: Preserving Our Digital Heritage (320 pp/softbound/$49.50/ISBN 978-1-57387-480-9) is published by Information Today, Inc. (ITI) and is available wherever quality books and ebooks are sold. For more information, call (800) 300-9868; fax (609) 654-4309; email [email protected]; or visit the ITI website at