19 November 2013

Call for Submissions -- "Capturing and Preserving the 'First Draft of History' In the Digital Environment"


As genealogists and family historians the preservation of news content is invaluable to us.  Just as we salivate over digitized newspaper collections and other news forums used long ago, our descendants will want to do the same for any missives written about (or by us).  Will they be able to?  If so, what has to happen now to ensure that modern news is not lost to future readers?

If you are involved in the process of preserving news, check out this call for submissions.  And, if you are interested in what is happening in this arena, in the summer of 2015, see if you can get your hands on a copy of the Newspaper Research Journal.

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Preservation of news content has always posed many troublesome problems for media organizations, libraries, archives and other institutions concerned about storing the ‘first draft of history.’

The issues now are even more pressing with the growth of “born digital” publications, that is digital-only publications, “big data” projects, interactive visualizations, social media content, user-generated content and comments and all the other formats and platforms on which news content is created and delivered. In addition, the traditional linear news cycle has been replaced with a “continuous loop of gathering, processing, versioning, output, response and update,” as outlined by the Center for Research Libraries in its initiatives on preserving digital news.

In light of these developments, the Newspaper Research Journal is accepting research articles that will shed light on “Capturing And Preserving the ‘First Draft Of History’ in the Digital Environment” for a special issue of NRJ, which is scheduled for summer 2015.

This call is for manuscripts that will provide insights into the many challenges and issues facing news organizations as they try to develop methods to capture their daily news production, efficiently store it and make it accessible to users inside and outside the newsroom. Articles also may offer suggestions that would help news organizations adapt to the changing environment in which information can be stored and accessed. Researchers may want to deal with many different aspects of the process—from managerial to organizational, economic and technological perspectives.

Both social-scientific and cultural/critical approaches will be considered, as will mixed-methods approaches. Because NRJ attempts to provide a bridge between academia and members of the profession, preference will be given to research submissions that will provide solutions industry professionals can use.

Submissions will undergo NRJ’s usual peer-review process and must be original research that is not under review with any other publication, although modified conference papers will be considered. NRJ’s published guidelines regarding length, citation style and formatting of tabular material will apply.

Direct queries or submissions to:
Kathleen A. Hansen (k-hans@umn.edu, 612-625-3480) or Nora Paul (npaul@umn.edu, 612-624-8593)


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