Information Access Seminar

Making Web Archiving Work for Streaming Media: Archiving the Websites of Contemporary Young Composers

Friday, January 19, 2018
3:10 pm to 5:00 pm
Howard Besser

Web archiving software is notoriously deficient at capturing streaming media. For the past two years New York University Libraries has been working with the Internet Archive to replace the ubiquitous Heritrix web crawler with one that can better capture streaming audio and video. With funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, they have both created a new crawler (“Browsler”) and tested this within the context of archiving the websites of contemporary young composers (showing how early-career composers represent themselves with a web presence).

This presentation will examine the deficiencies in current web crawlers for handling streaming media and presenting it in context, and explain how Browsler addresses those deficiencies. It will also explain the project to archive composer websites, touching on everything from contractual arrangements with the composers to tying together various NYU Library tools (ArchiveSpace, Archivmatica, repository) with the Internet Archive’s Archive-It, to assessing researcher satisfaction with the result. It will also cover the combinations of automated and manual methods for archiving composer websites.

Digital Privacy Training Project

Digital privacy is under constant threats from hackers, governments, and corporate entities. Most individuals are relatively naïve about how to protect their personal privacy. This talk reports on a project to create and train a set of 40 digital privacy advocates. Primarily drawn from geographically dispersed public libraries, the advocates will conduct local digital privacy workshops, proactively liaise with community groups (particularly with frequently targeted communities such as seniors and immigrant groups), advise on local privacy concerns, become public policy advocates, and turn their own libraries into privacy centers. As project funding only began last month, this talk will focus on end goals, recruitment, and planned curriculum and delivery methods for the six-month training program.

Howard Besser is founding director of New York University’s Moving Image Archiving & Preservation MA Program, professor of cinema studies, and senior scientist for digital initiatives for NYU’s library. He has published over 50 articles and book chapters on information environments in libraries, museums, and archives; has been involved in the creation of a wide variety of standards (Dublin Core, METS, PREMIS, Z39.87); and is one of the Library of Congress’ digital preservation pioneers. He has both a Ph.D. and MLIS from South Hall.

Last updated:

January 8, 2018