THE BRITISH LIBRARY

UK Web Archive blog

3 posts from March 2012

16 March 2012

Notice: Planned outage

Between Friday the 23rd and Sunday the 25th of March, we are upgrading the technical infrastructure that the UK Web Archive services rely upon.

To perform this upgrade, a short break in service is required. The UK Web Archive will be unavailable for part or all of this period. We will be back up and running on Monday the 26th of March.

We apologise if this causes you any inconvenience.

13 March 2012

Public Consultation on non-print legal deposit

The British Library has issued a Press Release on the Consultation on the Draft Legal Deposit Libraries (non-print works) Regulations 2013, recognising the importance of the legislation for web archive collections.

Since the introduction of the  Legal Deposit Libraries Act in 2003, the Legal Deposit Libraries have been working with the Government and publishers on the necessary regulations to allow the collection of digital material published in the UK on and offline. Without these regulations, a great deal of digital information about UK life and records of major events of the 21st century are at risk of being lost to the 'digital black hole'. 

The regulations are designed to 'ensure the Legal Deposit Libraries provide a national archive of the UK’s non-print published material'. This includes websites and would enable the web archive to begin comprehensive crawls of the UK domain, made accessible from the reading rooms of the Legal Deposit Libraries.

The consultation is open until May 18th.

01 March 2012

A Note on Nominations

Did you know that anyone can nominate websites for the UK Web Archive? We're exploring different ways to make it easier for people to nominate websites.

For several years now we've had a public nominations form on our website. However, we know that filling in a form can be a little daunting sometimes, even when it's only small and especially if you've not much time. So for the past few weeks we've been looking into additional options for accepting or submitting nominations.

Yesterday, we ran a small experiment using Twitter and invited followers to simply tweet the details of their nomination to @ukwebarchive. Our reasoning was simple: 

  1. It's very, very easy to share a link on Twitter
  2. So many people and organisations are already on Twitter and regularly share links with their followers
  3. It's fairly easy for us to monitor nominations coming in this way

We tweeted several times throughout the day about this and are pleased with the response. We had a small number of nominations on the day and several ReTweets, reaching a wider audience that our followers alone. It will be interesting to see if nominations continue to be tweeted when we aren't actively encouraging them. We need to evaluate the day in more detail, particularly with regards to how (and when) we respond, the types of nominations we receive, and how we can factor this into our current workflow. At the moment though, it's certainly worth more investigation.

We've also thinking about producing a browser plug-in that would  automatically populate a small number of fields with details of the site people are visiting, and submit them directly to us as a packaged nomination. This needs further thought, but we'd be interested to hear from people who'd like to use a plug-in like this. 

Finally, we're planning to overhaul the nominations form on the UK Web Archive website. This will make sure we're only asking people for information we really need, and which will help us to better assess their nomination.

So why not drop us a line, or a tweet, with your nomination? Alternatively, if you have any other ideas on how you'd like to nominate sites, why not leave a comment below?  We're always happy to hear new suggestions.