Relocating the notion of the archive within the digital age
Hill, V. (2009) Relocating the notion of the archive within the digital age. In: Photography, Archive and Memory Conference, Roehampton University, Friday 5th June 2009.
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Has the increasing popularity and accessibility of digital photography, especially through the incorporation of cameras into mobile phones, in capturing moments of everyday life combined with the use of web technology and social networking sites to create both personal archives and shared memories within an individuals social network affected the notion of the institutional archive and by implication photography’s role within it? In order to secure their roles as the repository of memory, do institutions have to move towards digitization of images and dissemination over the internet, utilising both institution specific web-sites and also through participation in the more interactive web 2.0 sites such as the photo sharing site flickr? Questions of the democratisation of the archive, in regard to both the size of the audiences that can be reached and the level of interaction with the collection that that audience is allowed also may need to addressed. The levels of social and individual engagement with the photographic content of archives possible in this manner also raises the question of where the balance of power of memory resides, whether it is the content of the images contained in institutional repositories or whether memory is only added to the archive through social interaction.