Cultural Heritage

A UKOLN Blog for the Cultural Heritage sector (now archived)

Status of this Blog

About the Cultural Heritage blog

The Cultural Heritage blog was part of the MLA-funded UKOLN work programme, which officially ended on 31 March 2011. The blog provided a key communication channel for UKOLN’s engagement with the cultural heritage sector, for disseminating information on UKOLN’s activities in this area, for encouraging discussion and debate on innovation and best practices and for providing a mechanisms for cultural heritage organisations to share experiences of innovative development activities.

In light of the end of the funding stream (and the forthcoming closure of MLA itself) we do no’t intend to publish further posts on this blog and the blog will be closed to comments.  However, UKOLN will continue to host the blog as well the Cultural Heritage Web site – this means that there will still be access to the topic pages and to our series of Briefing Papers (‘IntroBytes’).

We hope the blog has been useful to you and you’ve found the posts both stimulating and informative.

Further information about the blog can be found on the About page.

History of this Blog

UKOLN’s Cultural Heritage blog was launched on 1st January 2009 to support UKOLN’s work for the cultural heritage sector in the area of innovation and the networked environment. It was intended to “inform our readers of developments in this area, speculate on the implications of a rapidly changing environment and encourage discussion on emerging best practices”.

The blog ran for 27 months. In that time 186 posts were published. Some of these have been brief news items, some were more reflective pieces and others described how the sector is using all things digital. Initially most of the posts were written by the UKOLN contributors to the blog: Ann Chapman, Brian Kelly and Marieke Guy.

In addition to UKOLN contributions, we started fairly early on publishing occasional guest posts from people working in the sector. Our first guest post The Black Art of Blogging was by Catriona Cardie, who was inspired by one of Brian Kelly’s workshops on blogging. This was followed by posts such as When Peregrines Come to Town, Dull Library Web Sites and What’s my Email Address Anyway, Miss: Communicating with the Facebook Generation.

Then from April 2010 we changed the focus of the blog to concentrate on guest posts to reflect what people were already doing. Mostly we looked for people in the cultural heritage sector, though we’ve also had guest posts from a school librarian, three academic librarians, a library and information sciences lecturer and a journalist specialising in the library sector. In all a total of 42 guest posts were published. These ranged from My Life as an Object (a Renaissance East Midlands project) to Using a Blog as a Research Diary (by a PhD student), The National Library of Wales and Flickr Commons and Archives 2.0.

According to statistics provided on Technorati on 5 April 2011 the blog had a Technorati Authority of 72 and was ranked 67,327 of all 1,262,742 blogs indexed by Technorati, which put the blog in the top 5.3% of blogs. It should also be noted that the Akismet spam filter reported that there had been 81,077 spam comments posted to the blog.

Policies on the Status of the Blog

The following policies have been developed and will come into effect from 1 April 2011:

  • We do not intend to publish any further significant blog posts.
  • The comment feature on posts was closed on 8 April 2011.
  • We intend to keep the blog available for at least the next three years and existing posts will continue to be available at the current URL.

Reflections on the Effectiveness of the Blog

The blog had two distinct phases. In the first phase (January 2009 to March 2010), the content was mostly written by Brian Kelly, Marieke Guy and Ann Chapman with some guest posts. In the second phase (April 2010 to March 2011) the emphasis moved to featuring guest posts, illustrating what people in the sector were actually doing, together with posts on news of innovation in the sector and information on UKOLN activities, including the social web workshops for the sector.

We published 186 blog posts in total, 42 of which were by guest authors.

We feel that the blog achieved its aims of providing a key communication channel for UKOLN’s engagement with the cultural heritage sector and a way of demonstrating innovation in the use of Web 2.0 and social Web services as an integral part of the work of cultural heritage organisations.

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