The article Swatting the Long Tail of Digital Media: A Call for Collaboration (2012) held that few institutions would be able to have the hardware, software, and expertise to be able to read all digital media types. A group of archival practitioners started a pilot project to test outsourcing of the transfer of content from physical media they couldn’t read in-house. They realized the need for agreements between repositories and service providers to spell out the terms of such collaboration. The group began compiling a list of elements that should be considered when creating these agreements.
This article suggests elements to consider when creating an agreement for outsourcing the transfer of born-digital content from a physical medium, while encouraging adherence to both archival principles and technical requirements. The main areas are:
- General Provisions: desired outcome, description of work, responsibilities and liabilities
- Information Supplied by Service Provider: handling instructions
- Information Supplied by Client: content, inventory,
- Statement of Work: processing, exceptions, documentation, delivery, acceptance
- Cost and Liability: schedule of costs and charges, responsibilities of each party