May 28, 2022

CLIR, ASRC, and NRPB Publish “Guide to Audio Preservation”

Note: The new guide discussed below is free to download as a PDF (252 pages) and is also available for purchase ($30.00).


The Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR), in partnership with the Association for Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) and the National Recording Preservation Board of the Library of Congress, today announced publication of the ARSC Guide to Audio Preservation.

The guide is a practical introduction to caring for and preserving audio collections, specifically for individuals and institutions that have recorded sound collections but lack the expertise in one or more areas to preserve them.

Our audio legacy is at serious risk because of media deterioration, technological obsolescence, and, often, lack of accessibility. This legacy is remarkable in its diversity, ranging from wax cylinders of extinct Native American languages to tapes of local radio broadcasts, naturalists’ and ethnographers’ field recordings, small independent record company releases, and much more. Saving this irreplaceable treasure demands the joint effort of libraries, archives, museums, local history repositories, corporations, and individuals.


Nine chapters, contributed by a range of experts, cover audio conservation and preservation, recorded sound formats and their associated risks, appraisal, related copyright issues, and disaster preparedness. The guide also offers advice on making informed decisions about digitization, as well as strategies for managing digital content. An appendix to the guide focuses on fair use and sound recordings.

Direct to Full Text Publication: The ARSC Guide to Audio Preservation
252 pages; PDF.

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.