Digital Content Reviews (DCR) for Life Cycle Management
Draft template, last updated by Nancy McGovern September 2012
Purpose: This template contains sections to be completed to delineate potential implications of acquiring, preserving, and making available a digital content type over time.
- The information will be gathered internally from staff with relevant roles across the life cycle as well as from external examples.
- The life cycle group will coordinate the digital content reviews.
- The template describes content to be provided, asks questions to consider, and identifies information to be entered in brackets [ ].
- Each issue related to a life cycle stage may be described briefly (two or three sentences) in individual bullets.
- The resulting digital content review should be two to four pages and succinctly identify key issues to address.
- When the content type could be acquired from different sources (producers) that result in variations in workflow and other aspects of one or more of the life cycle stages, the digital content review should identify scenarios that address the variations.
- Based on the results of the digital content review, optional life cycle stage reviews may be completed, e.g., digital preservation review to address preservation concerns (see digital preservation review template and example).
Date DCR last updated: [the date this version of the digital content review was last updated]
Digital Content Type: [the digital content typed being assessed, e.g., digital video]
Contributors: [enter name and affiliation for each contributor to the digital content review]
Duration: This [digital content type] digital content review was completed between [start month/year] and [end month/year]. [if appropriate, add: It was updated or revised [on a specified date or between a start and end date]
Overview of Digital Content Type
[This section describes the known sources from which digital content of this type might be acquired, identifying the producer(s) and the relevant curators within the Libraries. The description should be specific enough to capture the distinctions, but provide a fairly high-level overview of the categories. The text should identify the major categories within the content type (buckets), relationships between the categories, relevant life cycle roles across the Libraries (documenting what is known about who does what), and variations of life cycle stages across the categories. Diagrams may be included or appended to document these aspects of life cycle management.
Review of Life Cycle Stages
- Selection Criteria: What criteria should be used to identify digital content of this type to be selected (or not selected) for acquisition? [e.g., significance, subject strengths]
- Preservation criteria: Not all digital information that might be of interest to users needs to be (or can be) preserved. Of the subject content selected, what criteria should be used to identify digital content of this type to be preserved? [what is MIT Libraries responsible for (e.g., archives, perpetual access rights in licenses) and interested in (e.g., special collections, rare or less available content) preserving?] This assessment step should be addressed at this early stage to enable effective life cycle management.
- Examples: Identify examples of digital content of this type that will or might be selected and preserved. From what sources might the content be acquired (this may affect the stages of the life cycle)? What department/unit/role would be the primary curator (owner) of the selected and preserved content throughout the life cycle (e.g., determine requirements, respond to questions)?
- Process: Would selecting this digital content type require adjustments to the existing workflow, e.g., role adjustments, additional steps?
Rights Management Assessment
- Intellectual property issues: Consider possible copyright and other intellectual property rights questions that might be relevant to this digital content type. The intellectual property questions often change depending on the source of the digital content, e.g., digital content created by the institution, digital content created elsewhere.
- Rights language: Is there language that should be included in deposit documents (e.g., deposit agreements, donor agreements, and license agreements) that is specific to this digital content type to address the range of rights issues? Are preservation rights (e.g., the right to copy, migrate, and reformat), confidentiality issues, and other life cycle rights and access issues addressed?
- Process: Would the current process for reviewing rights management require adjustments to address this digital content, e.g., role adjustments, additional steps? How are (or should) rights recommendations (be) conveyed to the acquisitions workflow?
- Note: the rights management assessment might be done prior to or during acquisition. These results will inform Access/Dissemination.
Acquisition (and Accessioning)
- Process: Is the digital content type already being acquired or is it a new and therefore unfamiliar type?
- For new digital content types, what requirements need to be addressed in defining the acquisition/accessioning workflow? What does the connection between the acquisition workflow and the ingest workflow need to look like?
- If digital content of this type is already being received, what improvements or adjustments to the existing acquisition workflow are needed? Is the connection between the acquisition workflow and the ingest workflow sufficient?
- Metadata: Is there an existing acquisition form that includes the digital content type? If there is, is the information captured by the form sufficient? Is there specific metadata (in addition to core metadata elements for acquisition) that need to be captured for this digital content type?
- Formats: Should there be (or are there) any limitations on file formats types that will be accepted?
- Process: Is the digital content type already being ingested (acquired, processed, and made ready for preservation) or is it a new and unfamiliar type?
- For new digital content types, what requirements need to be addressed in defining the ingest workflow? What does the connection between the ingest workflow and archival storage workflow need to look like?
- If digital content of this type is already being ingested, what improvements or adjustments to the existing ingest workflow are needed? Is the connection between the ingest workflow and the archival storage workflow sufficient?
- Depending on the formats accepted, is there a preferred format to normalize the content into? If so, are there concerns about normalization of this digital content type to be addressed?
- What does (or should) quality assurance look like for this digital content type?
- Are there specific things that need to happen before the archival information package can be generated at the end of ingest?
- Metadata: Is there specific metadata (in addition to core metadata) needs to be captured during ingest?
- Training: Is content-specific training needed to enable the digital content type to be ingested?
- Formats: Are there recommended preservation formats for the digital content type?
- Metadata: Is there curation or preservation metadata (in addition to core metadata) specific to this content type that will need to be captured over time?
- Object packaging: Are there particular challenges involved with defining submission, archival or dissemination packages for this digital content type?
- Preservation Strategies:
- Are there known preservation strategies for this content type?
- Is it feasible to implement the preferred preservation strategies?
Preservation (Archival) Storage
- Process: Is the digital content type already being archived or is it a new and unfamiliar type?
- For new digital content types, what requirements need to be addressed in defining the archival storage workflow (e.g., placing content into archival storage the first time, accumulating metadata over time, and updating AIPs over time)? What does the connection between the ingest workflow and archival storage workflow need to look like?
- If digital content of this type is already being archived, what improvements or adjustments to the existing archival storage workflow are needed? Is the connection between the archival storage workflow and the access workflow sufficient?
- Is there an error checking workflow in place? Are there specific error checking considerations to be addressed for this content type?
- Does the average file size or number of files for this digital content type present a particular challenge to current capacity or as content accumulates over time?
- Content/Project Management:
- Who will be the curator(s)/owner(s) (individuals or units) of the digital content based on the potential sources from which the content may be acquired?
- Who will serve as a project manager for the real-time processing when it is brought into custody?
- Who will address curatorial issues that may arise over time?
- Who has technical expertise relevant to the digital content type and can be brought in to advise on one or more stages of life cycle management for that type?
- Monitoring: Who will be involved in monitoring changes in technology that might enhance or inhibit the long-term access (curation and preservation) of the digital content?
- Costs: Are there cost issues that are specific to curating and preserving this digital content type (e.g., high costs for conversion from analog to digital, technical expertise, software and/or hardware)?
- User agreements: Is the existing language sufficient to enable the use of this digital content type? (see rights management section)
- Confidentiality: Are there any potential confidentiality issues to be addressed for this digital content type? (see rights management section)
- Are existing delivery mechanisms sufficient to effectively deliver the content?
- Will existing workflows for disseminating content need to be adjusted to include this type of digital content?
- Would the digital content type benefit from different delivery means not currently available?
- What metadata is available/missing for providing effective access?