Friday, January 18, 2008

Library of Congress and Flickr Unite!

This week, the Library of Congress blog reported a new pilot project with Flickr:
"If all goes according to plan, the project will help address at least two major challenges: how to ensure better and better access to our collections, and how to ensure that we have the best possible information about those collections for the benefit of researchers and posterity. ... Out of some 14 million prints, photographs and other visual materials at the Library of Congress, more than 3,000 photos from two of our most popular collections are being made available on our new Flickr page, to include only images for which no copyright restrictions are known to exist.
The real magic comes when the power of the Flickr community takes over. We want people to tag, comment and make notes on the images, just like any other Flickr photo, which will benefit not only the community but also the collections themselves. ... "
To view the photos on Flickr, go to: Two sets of digitized photos are available: 1,600 color images from the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information and about 1,500 images from the George Grantham Bain News Service. More about the project can be found here:

These pictures are available without copyright restrictions for educators and students! If Flickr is blocked in your district, remember that these images are available from your Library of Congress Reading Room! The powerful aspect of this pilot, is that now citizens, as Flickr users, can contribute to the information about the photos by entering comments and annotating images as they choose. This is the power of "Web 2.0" -- anyone can have a voice. Educational possibilities are endless!

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