November 26, 2015

New Report From OCLC Research: “Social Media and Archives: A Survey of Archive Users”

From OCLC Research:

Social Media and Archives: A Survey of Archive Users details findings from a survey of users of archives to learn more about how researchers find out about systems like ArchiveGrid, and the role that social media, recommendations, reviews, and other forms of user-contributed annotation play in archival research.

Written by OCLC Research Consulting Software Architect Bruce Washburn, Research Assistant Ellen Eckert, and Senior Program Officer Merrilee Proffitt, this report will be of interest to those working with archival discovery services, or those investigating the utility of social media in discovery environments.

Key Findings

  • E-mail and word of mouth continue to be the primary ways archival researchers share information about the resources they discover.
  • Features such as tags, reviews, recommendations and user comments are viewed as useful by fewer than half of those responding.
  • However, researchers value recommendations given by librarians and archivists.
  • One-quarter of all survey respondents identified themselves as “unaffiliated scholars,” representing a significant number of those interested in making use of archival material.

Direct to Full Text Report (32 pages; PDF)

Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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