3 Replies to “Digital Preservation survey: Jacobus tenBroek Library at the National Federation of the Blind”

  1. It looks like this library has one of the classic problems of public institutional libraries; plenty of knowledge, not enough staffing. I remember the state library of Pennsylvania established a partnership with the Internet Archive to help manage their digital collections, because they had a similar problem. Is partnerships with other organizations a possibility here? Also,

    Btw, not directly related, but I read an interesting article concerning Hathitrust and a way it is seeking to help improve the situation for visually disabled students. http://lj.libraryjournal.com/2012/11/copyright/hathitrust-verdict-could-transform-university-access-for-the-blind/#_

    Also was reading this article concerning the braille digitization process, and it sounds like it may require special equipment and software; is this available at this library? http://hyperallergic.com/315582/digitizing-the-worlds-largest-braille-music-collection/

  2. Hey Scott,

    To your first question about partnerships, yes, there has been some coordination at times between the tenBroek Library and local universities, and I agree, collaboration is practically a necessity for all cultural and educational organizations. Our resources are so limited that we can’t realistically do everything in our own silos.

    Your later points came up in my discussions with the archivist/librarian, Anna. NFB is very aware of the Chafee Amendment that allows for transformation of copyrighted materials for the use of the blind and visually impaired (as discussed in that HathiTrust article). They summarize it here: https://nfb.org/copyright-changes

    What’s more, they have been actively involved in expanding that same copyright exemption internationally via WIPO treaty provisions (https://nfb.org/images/nfb/publications/bm/bm13/bm1308/bm130810.htm). The WIPO Marrakesh Treaty just went into effect in September!

    We also talked a little about digitization of Braille. It’s outside the scope of our project, but I was curious. NFB/tenBroek does not have the expensive equipment needed for digitization (some info is here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optical_braille_recognition). They DO have important and unique Braille manuscripts and documents (for example, things composed on a Braille typewriter). As I mentioned above, it is most cost-effective to do audio recordings of Braille documents by having someone read it aloud.

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