1. Can an organization apply for funding to support a project or portion thereof that has been undertaken prior to the BC History Digitization Program (Program) adjudication?
In that funding is intended to support new projects that would have not been possible without the Program’s support, the inclusion of digitization activities previously undertaken (and presumably previously funded) is not eligible for funding. If, however, the project or portion thereof is integral to the project being applied for, previously expended funding may be eligible as part of the applicant’s contribution. Situations where this would not be permissible would include applicant’s contributions previously used as a match in a previous Program application.
2. What kinds of material may be included in Program applications?
The Program is open to any form of material that can be digitized and made available on the internet. This includes photographs, audio and video recordings, museum artefacts, original documents, published material (directories, newspapers), architectural and cartographic drawings. The real key is to identify unique material and provide a strong rationale for its significance in a potential digitization project.
3. For applications involving audio and video material, is full transcription an eligible expense for which program funding may be requested?
No, the goal of the Program is to provide support for the digitization and provision of access directly to the original object (i.e. audio/video tape). While the Program will support the preparation of metadata to assist researchers in getting to the digitized recording, it will not support the cost of full transcription of the tape. If the institution thinks this is necessary and is prepared to support this activity, this expenditure may be eligible as part of the applicant’s contribution.
4. Do applicants need to be concerned about copyright issues?
For any material for which the applicant organization does not hold complete and clear copyright or for materials not in the public domain, the organization must secure written permission from the copyright holder to allow the material to be digitized so that it can be made freely available. See CLA Copyright Information Centre for more information.
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5. How do organizations operated by volunteers value the unpaid time spent by volunteers working on a project as part of the applicant’s contribution?
Organizations staffed primarily by volunteers may assign a value of $10 per hour as their applicant contribution for workers participating on the project.
6. What level of metadata creation is eligible for Program funding?
Items that will be digitized as part of Program funded projects should already be catalogued or arranged and described. Only very basic metadata development – such as the creation of Dublin Core metadata – is eligible for funding. To be eligible, metadata should focus on making the material searchable in a web environment and be based on previously existing descriptions.
7. What are some best practices for digitization that applicants might reference?
Digital Toolbox (Collaborative Digitization Program)
The NINCH Guide to Good Practice in the Digital Representation and Management of Cultural Heritage Materials (National Initiative for a Networked Cultural Heritage)
Creating and Managing Digital Content (Canadian Heritage Information Network)
A Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections (National Information Standards Organization)
Building Digital Collections: A Technical Overview (Library of Congress – American Memory)
Dublin Core Metadata Element Set ( Dublin Core Metadata Initiative)