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Losing control: experiments in outreach
 

Losing control: experiments in outreach

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Presentation to the Archives Association of Ontario, June 16, 2011, looking at different approaches to outreach in a small municipal archive service.

Presentation to the Archives Association of Ontario, June 16, 2011, looking at different approaches to outreach in a small municipal archive service.

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    Losing control: experiments in outreach Losing control: experiments in outreach Presentation Transcript

    • Losing control:experiments in outreach
      Amanda Hill
      Hillbraith Ltd.
      [Deseronto Archives]
    • Pushing the boundaries
      Existing outreach
      Blog
      Twitter
      Flickr site for images
      Bi-monthly town newsletters (delivered to every home in Deseronto)
      All mediated by the Archives
      How to take it further?
    • User-generated content?
      Grant of $16,000 from Museums and Technology Fund, 2010 with matched funding of $4,000 from the Town of Deseronto
      Used to build and generate content for a new website: ‘About Deseronto’
      Inspiration: http://ournewhaven.org.uk
    • Absence…
      Physical distance from home town
      Feelings of affection for home town
      with apologies to Jessica Hagy of ‘Indexed’ http://thisisindexed.com
    • Low-cost, sustainable approach
      Just launching a beta version of their hosted service in April 2010
    • Omeka.org and Omeka.net
    • Omeka.net plans
    • Disadvantages
      Initially, Omeka.net did not offer an option for users to upload materials direct
      Which had been the whole point of ‘About Deseronto’
      Hard to get people to engage
      Very small population, which doesn’t help!
    • New direction
      Oral histories
      Archives Board members helped to identify potential interviewees
      10 interviews conducted during the course of the project
      Big learning curve – technology, technique
    • Christmas in the funeral home
    • Memories
    • ‘About Deseronto’
      Partial success
      ‘Contribute’ option now available, but not really being used!
    • Other outreach experiments
      Family/Heritage Day competition
    • Self-guided tour
      110 downloads
    • Doors Open
      Partnership between Napanee and Deseronto
      Benefits of Napanee’s previous experience
      Recycled earlier work: Flickr images for display boards and brochures
      Plan to use these materials in future events - Waterfront Festival on July 2nd
    • Facebook
      Set up a Facebook account for the Archives to help promote Doors Open through an event page
      An unexpected success
      (yet another site to maintain…)
      Also used Twitter to do a daily tweet on Doors Open
    • Doors Open verdict
      A lot of work, but good to meet people on the day who had never used the archives
      1,000 people visited sites in Deseronto
      Identified some more potential oral history interviewees
      Even accessioned some new materials for the archives!
    • Conclusions on experiments
      Try different things to see what happens
      Some things work better than others
      Some are more work than others
      Digitization groundwork (lots of images on Flickr) was a real boon
    • Contact details
      deserontoarchives@gmail.com
      http://deserontoarchives.wordpress.com
      @DeserontoArch on Twitter