Digital Curator of Journalism
University of Missouri
RJI Fellow, Project Consultant
Reynolds Journalism Institute
The systems and workflows that currently preserve analog news content are inadequate to capture the digital version of the “first draft of history.” This is a critical contemporary issue because news content is essential to the public record and a fundamental accountability mechanism for government and corporate action. Without intervention, parts of the historical record are likely to be lost for good, due to the complexity and fragility of digitally published news. After an 18-month study, funded by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, a research team based at the University of Missouri Libraries and the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute released its 150-page report earlier this year, titled “Endangered but Not Too Late: The State of Digital News Preservation.” The report contains 15 key findings from interviews with 115 individuals from 29 news organizations, four news technology companies, two news aggregators and five memory institutions. It dives deeply into the technology, policies and practices used by these organizations in order to better understand how digital news content can be preserved. The report includes 14 recommendations for how news content can be better preserved, including new policies, technologies, workflows and practices to address the issue, along with partnerships with libraries and archives to provide long-term access to endangered digital news content.
Report download page: https://rjionline.org/preservenews/
RJI story and video about the report: https://rjionline.org/technology/new-report-shows-its-time-to-preserve-your-digital-news/