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    "Contains Scenes of Mild Peril": The state of digital preservation across seven million articles​

    Eve, Martin Paul (2023) "Contains Scenes of Mild Peril": The state of digital preservation across seven million articles​. In: 2023 Charleston Conference, 27th November 2023, Online.

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    Digital preservation underpins the persistence of scholarly links and citations through the DOI system. But we do not currently know, at scale, the extent to which articles assigned a DOI are adequately preserved. In this talk, I describe our efforts to construct a database of preservation information from original archival sources and then to examine the preservation statuses of 7,438,037 DOIs in a random sample. Our work reveals an alarming preservation deficit. Only 0.96% of Crossref members (n=204) can be confirmed to digitally preserve over 75% of their content in 3 or more of the archives that we studied. A slightly larger proportion – 8.5% (n=1,797) – preserved over 50% of their content in 2 or more archives. Many members – 57.7% (n=12,257) – though, only met the threshold of having 25% of their material in a single archive. Most worryingly, 32.9% (n=6,982) of Crossref members seem not to have any adequate digital preservation in place, against the recommendations of the Digital Preservation Coalition. In light of these findings, I suggest a number of currently lacking infrastructural mechanisms that we need to improve the state of digital preservation. If we want the digital scholarly record to persist beyond the twenty-first century, we are still quite some way from guaranteeing this.


    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Keynote)
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Creative Arts, Culture and Communication
    Depositing User: Martin Eve
    Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2023 15:42
    Last Modified: 20 Nov 2023 15:42


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