Yes, it’s time for another competition, and this year’s Best Archives on the Web awards features all new categories designed to highlight innovation. This year’s categories are:
Best re-purposing of descriptive data
This award is inspired by the efforts of many archives (including our National Archives and Records Administration) to liberate their descriptive data and make it available for creative re-use. The winner of this award will be the person or organization who takes descriptive data (whether about collections or people) and does something new with it. This could be a complete creative re-imagining of the data for another purpose or creating a more usable interface for discovery. I hope this award isn’t ahead of its time and that we get some strong nominations!
Best use of crowdsourcing for description
Whether through Flickr, wikis, blogs or allowing users to comment on descriptions in their online catalogs, many archives are starting to harness the power of their regular researchers as well as experts around the world to help augment or create descriptions for their collections. This award will recognize crowdsourcing efforts that have resulted in a significant exchange of information for the institution. I know the Library of Congress on Flickr may seem like the obvious winner in this category, but I suspect that are a lot of other efforts out there that can give them some competition. Remember, if the crowdsourcing efforts produced results that were significant for the institution, then that’s what counts. This is your chance to beat out the LoC and their 23 million views!
Most innovative archives on the Web
At this point, many archives have embraced the use of social media and have blogs, Facebook pages, and Twitter accounts, so this award is designed to recognize archives who are exploring something new in their Web presence. We’ll leave the category open to your own interpretation–what do you think is innovative? This could include using familiar social media in new ways, using a new technology, exploring a creative partnership, taking a new approach to presentation, or something that I haven’t even thought of providing as an example. If you know of an archives doing something cool and different, nominate them and we’ll be happy to highlight their achievement with this award!
Nominations are due by midnight on Tuesday, June 1. Nominations should be submitted to: nominations[at]archivesnext.com and must include:
1) Nominator’s name and contact information
2) Name and contact information of person or organization being nominated
3) Category in which the person or organization is being nominated
4) A statement of no more than 500 words that describes how the site meets the criteria for the category.
You may nominate yourself, and if you have any questions about whether or not a site is suitable for one of the categories, don’t hesitate to ask. Nominate early and often!