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Digital preservation – making the song remain the same

Frank McCarthy (Southampton City Council, Southampton, UK)

Records Management Journal

ISSN: 0956-5698

Article publication date: 13 June 2008




The purpose of this paper is to provide a viewpoint using analogies to musical media of the issues that information professionals face in selecting the right digital preservation strategy.


Analogies to the changes in music media along with a selection of articles between 1995 and 2008 provide the basis for a number of views from the author. The preservation portions are sorted into the three main categories of translation/conversion, migration and emulation. A conclusion to the article summarises the difficulties being faced.


Having the correct electronic records policies, procedures and systems that adhere to ISO 15489 is a cornerstone of an electronic record preservation programme. Stephens noted that, in practical terms, this means that any recordkeeping system, regardless of the particular technology or storage medium employed, should be designed and implemented in a manner such that its operators can demonstrate the integrity of the records if called upon to do so.


The paper provides a useful viewpoint from an experienced records manager tackling the issues of digital preservation.



McCarthy, F. (2008), "Digital preservation – making the song remain the same", Records Management Journal, Vol. 18 No. 2, pp. 107-114.



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Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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