Presented 24 September 2013 at Access Conference 2013.
In January 2013, the NCSU Libraries opened the James B. Hunt Jr. Library at North Carolina State University. Telling the story of the new library was crowdsourced through an Instagram-based project called My #HuntLibrary. Developed collaboratively by our Digital Library Initiatives, Communications, and Special Collections departments, My #HuntLibrary is both a user engagement tool and a digital preservation effort. Photographs tagged #HuntLibrary are included in a collection that is displayed in multiple interactive, responsive views, ranging from four inches to twenty feet. The entire collection of digital images will be preserved in our digital archives.
In May 2013, the My #HuntLibrary code was released as an open-source Rails Engine called “lentil” in order to simplify the creation of similar projects. lentil is a framework for applications that harvest image metadata from Instagram, provides moderation, browsing, voting, and sharing tools, and harvests image files and submits donor agreements in preparation of ingest into external repositories. A lentil-based application can be quickly customized and deployed to any Rails-capable web server (including Heroku) as a complete crowdsourced photographic documentation project.
lentil serves as a platform for investigating questions related to library approaches to user engagement, the preservation of social media, large-scale interface design, and including new participants in digital archival materials creation and selection processes. This presentation will present insights based on user interviews, application usage data, image contributions, social media feedback, voting (community curation) trends, and experience integrating these materials into existing digital collections systems.