Midwinter PARS Committee Reports

These reports summarize ALCTS committee activities up to and during the 2012 ALA Annual Midwinter Meeting in Dallas, Texas, held January 19–23, 2012.

ALCTS Division | Acquisitions (AS) | Cataloging & Metadata Management (CaMMS) | Collection Management (CMS) | Continuing Resources (CRS) | Preservation & Reformatting (PARS)

Preservation and Reformatting Section (PARS) Committees

Executive Committee


PARS conducted two successful experiments with hybrid meetings at Midwinter. (1) At PARS All-Committee, we used Google+ and Skype to connect two committees and one working group with at least one virtual member each. (2) ALCTS funded live streaming of the PARS Forum at Midwinter using GoTo Webinar. We had 5 speakers in three geographically separate locations, a live audience, and at least 16 people participating virtually from across the country. The PARS Web Working Group is collecting feedback from participants so that we can apply the lessons learned to planning for Annual.

PARS’ Emerging Leaders project proposal (CASPARS: Conference Attendance Strategy for PARS) was selected. Tara Kennedy is our liaison to Team D.

Preservation Week has its first national spokesperson, Steve Berry, as well as expanding publicity efforts on Facebook and Twitter, a kickoff event at Midwinter, and exhibit-floor booths at ALA and PLA.


Holly Robertson will work on a special project to explore ways to collect preservation statistics now that the ARL Preservation Statistics are no longer used.

The PARS Digital Preservation IG is coordinating with the new ACRL Digital Curation IG and two other PARS Interest Groups to present discussions on a single theme at Annual 2012.

PARS programs scheduled for Anaheim include (1) “Preservation in the Age of HathiTrust and Shared Print Storage Initiatives” (virtual preconference); (2) “Brittle Book Strategies for the 21st Century: Retention of Originals After Digitization” (90 minute panel session), and (3) “Collaboration on Cultural Heritage: Bringing Together Museums, Archives and Libraries in The California Preservation Program and the Californians Connecting to Collections Project.”

Preservation Standards & Practices Committee

Book and Paper Interest Group

There were thirty attendees to the meeting where representatives from Baylor, Texas A&M, UT Austin School or Architecture, and UT Austin Architectural Archives discussed exhibition programs. There were some common themes across all of the speakers such as the importance of communication and raising awareness of the library's resources while balancing preservation of the originals and small undedicated staff.

Digital Preservation Interest Group

There were thirty-eight attendees to three independent presentations. Michelle Reilly from the University of Houston Libraries spoke about how she developed a simple strategy for collecting and archiving born digital materials. Ann Marie Willer, Preservation Librarian, MIT Libraries, and Nick Szydlowski, IMLS Preservation Administration Fellow, NYPL, gave a brief report on an assessment project they undertook at MIT Libraries on the preservation status of the Libraries' ejournal holdings. Patricia Galloway, Professor at SLIS, UT-Austin, discussed the work of graduate students in her Problems in the Permanent Retention of Electronic Records course.

Digital Conversion Interest Group

Had a very successful meeting with seventy attendees speaking broadly about moving image conversion. Jake Nadal discussed setting up an audio/visual laboratory at UCLA. Linda Tadic from the Audiovisual Archive Networkspoke about the importance of integrating digital preservation at the point of creating digital content. George Blood spoke about his work for the Library of Congress exploring digitizing video. Faren Gracy from Kent State discussed distribution and consumption patterns of archival moving images in online environments.

Preservation Standards & Practices Business

Over the fall PS&P reviewed and commented on the proposed NISO Recommended Practice on Physical Delivery of Library Resources. The Digitization Guidelines Task Force, which was charged by PARS Executive Committee at the annual conference, has been meeting regularly and will have a final report ready to submit by the 2012 annual conference.

Program, Planning, & Publications Committee

The PARS Program, Planning and Publications Committee (PPP) met Monday morning at the PARS All Committee Meeting. The meeting included reports from liaisons, review of recent and upcoming programs and publications, as well as discussion of several important initiatives.

Liaison reports included updates from the ALCTS Continuing Education Committee on upcoming preservation-related courses and from the ALCTS Publication Committee on their recent member survey and opportunities for preservation publications in the ALCTS Paper Series and Huron Press. The Committee was also briefed on the new ALCTS Strategic planning initiative and how to use the collaborative tool on ALA Connect.

Review of past programs and publications:

  • The “Preservation Education Directory, 9th Edition” has been approved and posted on ALA Connect at http://connect.ala.org/node/168621. It will be published on the ALCTS web site shortly, followed by a publicity effort.
  • The webinar, “Book Repair Basics for Libraries,” was a success despite some software issues. The webinar is freely available to the public at http://www.ala.org/alcts/confevents/upcoming/webinar/pres/091411
  • The Midwinter PARS Forum, “Disaster Planning for High Density Storage Facilities,” was a hybrid program (available to in-person and virtual participants). The Committee agreed that the format worked well with the help of the conference IT staff, effective software and audio devices.

Discussion of Upcoming Programs and Publications

“Preparing for the Worst: Disaster Planning for High Density Storage,” ALCTS webinar is scheduled for Feb. 22, 2012

“Steps in a Digital Preservation Workflow,” ALCTS webinar will be held March 7, 2012

Two free webinars, “Taking Care: Family Textiles” and “Preserving Your Personal Digital Photographs” will be held as part of Preservation Week 2012

“Fundamentals of Preservation,” ALCTS web course will be offered again this year

“Fundamentals of Digital Preservation,” ALCTS web course is under development

“Preservation in the Age of HathiTrust and Shared Print Storage Initiatives” will be held as an Annual 2012 virtual preconference (Note, the title is expected to change)

“Brittle Book Strategies for the 21st Century” will be a program at Annual 2012. The chair is considering holding an E-Forum and/or posting a poll to ALA Connect prior to the program.

“Collaboration on Cultural Heritage: Bringing Together Museums, Archives, and Libraries in the California Preservation Program and the Californians Connecting to Collections Project,” will be a program at Annual 2012.

Future Proposed Ideas

High-density disaster planning was suggested as a topic for an ALCTS Paper Series.

A short publication, “Response, Recovery, and Reality: Disaster Preparedness for the Long Term,” was suggested as a follow-up to the 2011 PPIG panel discussion of the same title; it could include disaster case studies that focus on long-term recovery.

The “Preservation Film Festival” is being considered for Annual 2013; Katherine Risseeuw has agreed to serve as Chair

“IMLS Connecting to Collections: C2C Exchange,” is being considered as an Annual 2013 virtual preconference


Increasing collaboration, especially on digital topics: The new ALA Digital Content in Libraries Working Group was discussed and the Committee agreed that PARS should increase programs and publications related to digital preservation. Toward this effort we will explore opportunities to collaborate with sections and interest groups outside PARS. The Chair agreed to take an inventory of all groups addressing digital topics within ALA.

The PPP Committee’s Midwinter Meeting was held as a hybrid in-person and virtual meeting using Google+. It was agreed by all attendees that this format did not work well, mainly due to communication difficulty. Suggested improvements include a private room with a conference phone, headsets, or other software such as VOIP.

ALCTS Strategic Plan: The Committee discussed using the new ALCTS Strategic Plan Tracking Mechanism and how PPP can contribute to the 2012 theme, “Transforming Collections.”