A new mandate for the digital age: implementing electronic legal deposit at the National Library of Australia

Meredith Batten and Kathryn Ross, National Library of Australia

Concurrent session 7
Wednesday 15 February 2017, 10:30am - 10:55am


In February 2016 the legal deposit provisions in Australia’s Copyright Act were expanded to include digital publications and the public .au web domain. The result of twenty years of advocacy, the new provisions marks a dramatic shift in how Australia collects, preserves and makes accessible the full online publishing landscape.

Legal deposit has been at the core of the National Library’s collections and services since it was introduced in Australia in 1912. It remains the most important mechanism by which national and state libraries can preserve the published record of their countries or states. But since the emergence of electronic publishing in the 1980s and online publishing in the 1990s, the Australian legal deposit scheme has been only performing half its role.

This paper will demonstrate the transformational innovation employed at the National Library to apply this legislative intent in a digital world. It will describe our collaboration with major Australian book and serial publishers as well as the small and independent publishing sectors to build the innovative edeposit service for books, serials, music scores and maps and develop bulk deposit for the ingest of large publishing outputs and metadata sets.

It will outline the redevelopment of our digital library infrastructure from digital object storage through digital collection management and preservation systems, the automation of publisher data and access agreements into the catalogue and delivery of digital publications in the reading rooms and Trove.

It will examine how large-scale technological redevelopment has synthesised with stakeholder consultation, digital upskilling of staff and multi-modal communication to create a contemporary streamlined deposit platform, a publisher-driven model of collecting and an overhaul of how the traditional library service is perceived by the publishing sector and Australian public.

Presentation - Available now.

Paper - Available now.


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