Personal Digital Archiving

On Friday, October 18, 2013, Lauren Goodley from Texas State University and I did a presentation about Personal Digital Archiving for the Texas Library Association District 3 Annual Meeting. More accurately, Lauren did a presentation about Personal Digital Archiving, based on materials from the Library of Congress’ DPOE program, and I followed up with some resources about hosting Personal Digital Archiving Day events. The handouts and other resources are available at

Pulling this presentation together was interesting. Lauren had done a similar presentation for me before, as part of the Connecting to Collections Caring for Digital Materials webinar series, but the focus there was more on institutional digital archives. We were hampered in our plans to put together material on Personal Digital Archiving by the fact that the federal government shutdown of 2013 meant that most of the Library of Congress resources were not available. I spent a lot of time tracking down copies of their handouts and videos to include in the resources list. Naturally, given the amount of work I had to do to find the alternate versions, the website was back up and running before our presentation. I’ve included links for both the versions on the Library of Congress website and the alternate versions, just in case.

A few things of particular interest that I discovered while pulling all of this together:

I hope that more organizations will publish versions of their resources in other languages; Digital Preservation Europe is one of the better resources, but their funding ended in 2009, and some of their materials are already a bit dated. The complete list of DPE briefing papers is available at

I also signed up for an “If This, Then That” (IFTTT) account for the first time. At first, it did make me a little uneasy to authorize IFTTT to use the various social media channels on which I have accounts (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr — they support many more). However, the ability to save tweets, posts, pins, and whathaveyou to Dropbox or Google Drive or other accounts, where I can then create a personal (i.e., non-cloud) backup is very nice. Only time will tell how secure the IFTTT service is, but you do have to wonder who else may be accessing your data. I do recommend that you read their privacy policy ( before you decide to test out any of their recipes (see for more musings on this).


I am an independent digital collections and library technology consultant in Austin, TX.

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