Brief round up of latest responses to LOC Twitter acquisition

Tracking all the responses to the LOC’s acquisition of everyone’s (public) tweets would take more time than I have, so here are just some of the highlights:

  • First and foremost, the two new blogs at the National Archives have enabled them to respond quickly and effectively to several aspects of the Twitter story. On his AOTUS blog, David Ferreiro addresses the confusion many have about the difference between the Library of Congress and the National Archives and defends the potential research value of the Twitter collection. On the Records Express blog, Paul Wester explains why this kind of acquisition is not appropriate for the National Archives (reviewing again how they are different from the LOC) as well as stating clearly what kinds of tweets may end up in the National Archives–those that are considered Federal records. These posts are an excellent example of the kind of agility an institutional blog can give archives in getting out responses to issues that attract public attention and educating the public about the purpose of the archives.
  • Robert X. Cringely argues “Twitter Archiving Is for the Birds” in PCWorld.
  • Fred Stutzman, doctoral student at UNC-Chapel Hill SLIS has had several interesting posts, including “Twitter and the Library of Congress” and “Is it time to cancel your Twitter account?” That second post includes a good round-up of the latest responses, so I won’t repeat his list here.
  • Except to note, as he does, that Michael Zimmer has raised on number of posts on his blog–too many to list individually.
  • And here’s an interview with Martha Anderson from LOC in The American Prospect, which answers some questions (but by no means all).
  • OVERSIGHT: Missed a good one–Resource Shelf’s “The Twitter Archives from the Library of Congress & Google: The Facts as We Know Them.” Sorry about that.

    If you come across anything else that might be of interest, please share a link in the comments.

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    8 Responses to Brief round up of latest responses to LOC Twitter acquisition

    1. andrew says:

      Maybe it’s time for the AOTUS to reconsider the subtitle of his blog.

    2. Kate T. says:

      Andrew–yes, someone pointed out elsewhere that the National Archives doesn’t really “collect.” It’s not the most accurate title, but the New York Times used it in a recent profile of him (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/01/arts/design/01archives.html) so it’s probably here to stay.

      FYI-another piece on the issue, this time from Ars Technica: http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/04/why-is-the-us-govt-archiving-your-tweets-we-ask-them.ars

    3. andrew says:

      I was hoping that Times article was just journalistic license, but I guess not. Thanks for the Ars Technica link. I wonder what Twitter is doing with their internal institutional records.

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    5. Kate T. says:

      Again, I’m not trying to keep up with everything on this, but here’s a good article from Slate.com, “How future historians will use the Twitter archives”: http://www.slate.com/id/2251429/

    6. Kate T. says:

      Ok, just to help me keep track of them, here’s another response: ReadWriteWeb, with a quote from Tom Scheinfeldt of the Center for History & New Media at GMU

      http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/twitter_archive_is_nothing_without_tools_funding.php

      and an episode of the Digital Campus podcast: http://digitalcampus.tv/2010/04/21/episode-55-social-history/

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