Library and Archives Canada
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About the Collection

Digital Collection Development Policy

2. Definitions

Library and Archives Canada recognizes that other institutions, associations, and international bodies may use definitions which differ in some way from the ones listed below. For the purpose of this Policy and the activities of Library and Archives Canada associated with digital materials, these definitions will be used.

Digital materials
A broad term encompassing "born digital" publications and records, whether received digitally or on a physical carrier, and digitized publications and records created as a result of converting analog materials to digital form. This definition covers materials commonly and variously referred to as electronic records, online publications, Internet publications, and electronic publications.

Digital documentary heritage materials - digital materials of interest to Canada. Digital materials "of interest" are broadly interpreted to mean materials published, produced, or created in Canada, and materials published or produced in another country where the creator is Canadian, or where the publication or record has a Canadian subject.

Digital publication
A digitally encoded information resource made available to the public either through a communications network like the Internet, or on a physical carrier.

Networked digital publication
A networked digital publication normally comprises the linked objects on one communications network domain which are judged to be intrinsic to the publication.

Web site
A set of linked web pages, usually including a home page, related by content or domain, and prepared and maintained as a collection of information by a person, group, or organization. A web page is any computer file, graphical material, or grouping of text accessible via the Internet which can be addressed by a hypertext link and rendered for a user by a browser for display or printing.

Digital record
A digitally encoded information resource created digitally in the course of day to day business of an organization or individual and assigned formal status by the organization or individual.

Private digital record - a digital record under the control of an organization or individual.

Government digital record - a digital record under the control of a government institution.

Digital preservation
The managed activities necessary to ensure continued access to digital materials for as long as necessary.

Preservation activities maintain the following attributes of digital publications and records:

An understandable record or publication is one which is readable and has associated with it the technical documentation and contextual information which allow a user to understand not only its literal content but also the context of its creation and its relation to other materials.

A reliable record or publication is one which has authority and trustworthiness as evidence of the actions or activities to which it relates, which is dependent upon the completeness of intellectual form and the knowledge that it was generated according to established business procedures.

An authentic record or publication is one whose reliability has been preserved over time, that is, that has not been altered, manipulated or otherwise falsified over time, either intentionally or unintentionally.

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