LC Seeks Community Tagging in Flickr's New 'Commons';
Norman Oder -- Library Journal, 01/17/2008
The Library of Congress has joined photo-sharing site Flickr, making available 3000 photos for which no copyright restrictions are known to exist, even though the library doesn’t own copyright. The goal: community tagging for segments of the George Grantham Bain Collection, one of America's earliest news picture agencies (1910–20), and color photos from the Great Depression and World War II (1939–44) from the United States Farm Security Administration and the Office of War Information. As LC’s Matt Raymond explained on the LC Blog, “many photos are missing key caption information such as where the photo was taken and who is pictured. If such information is collected via Flickr members, it can potentially enhance the quality of the bibliographic records for the images.”
As part of this pilot, Flickr has created The Commons, a new model for publicly held photographic collections. “For the time being on Flickr this new usage is being contained to the Library of Congress account,” Flickr explained. “If the pilot works…we'll look to allow other interested cultural institutions the opportunity to extend the application of ‘no known restrictions’ to their catalogues.” Gary Price of Resource Shelf noted that another national library is even ahead of LC: the National Library of Australia and its Picture Australia project has had a Flickr section for a few years .