ESVA Migration FAQs

ESVA Migration FAQs

An Update from Your Friends at the Emilio Segrè Visual Archives

Some very big, very exciting changes are coming to the Emilio Segrè Visual Archives! 

ESVA is moving to a new site and adopting an open access approach to digital image sharing. Once we have transitioned to the new site, we will no longer charge for our high-resolution digital images or for usage fees. In addition to this, we hope to offer our users an improved photo research experience. We are excited to implement these changes and adapt with the best practices of our industry.

Although the photo site may contain similar metadata (data about the resources) to our old site, we’ve been working behind-the-scenes on standardizing the fields we use to describe our digitized visual materials. Our data will now be described using MODS (Metadata Object Description Schema) elements and attributes.

Two data sets describing the same digital image, side by side.

You can zoom into this image to see the before-and-after transformation of the metadata for this image from our John Irwin Slide Collection. Our data is now much cleaner, machine-readable, and shareable after we translated it into MODS.  

Below are some FAQs and answers which will give you a little more context about the migration!

You might be wondering... 

Why is ESVA moving? 

We strive to provide the best, most efficient service for our researchers and to comply with the best practices of the archival field. For these reasons, we are moving to a new web platform that will better host our collections and allow for open access distribution, rights statements, and an easier searching experience.  

Additionally, the new host for ESVA, Islandora, also holds the rest of the Niels Bohr Library & Archives digital collection materials. Now researchers can find ESVA photos as well as manuscripts, publications, audiovisual materials, and more - all in one place!

Where is ESVA moving?

ESVA will soon be incorporated into our existing digital collections, where the rest of the Niels Bohr Library & Archives digital collection materials are located. Researchers will be able to search, browse, and view ESVA photos as well as manuscripts, publications, audiovisual materials, and more - all in one place!

When will the move take place? 

Although we don’t have an exact launch date for our new site, we expect the migration to be completed in 2021. We will share an official launch date on this page as soon as one becomes official!

What changes to the photo acquisition process can be expected? 

When you find a photo on our new site, you will be able to download or save our high-resolution copies directly from the webpage, no purchases necessary! 

Because we have to comply with the wishes of donors and copyright holders, there will be a few exceptions to this rule, but the vast majority of the photo collections will now be very easy to obtain. 

What is open access photo sharing? 

Wikipedia defines open access as “a set of principles and a range of practices through which research outputs are distributed online, free of cost or other access barriers.”  

By this, it is simply meant that we want to make our materials as accessible as we can! Photos will no longer be available only to those who can afford them, because they will be free for everyone.  

Although we will no longer be charging for photos, it is important to keep in mind that this does not necessarily mean anyone has permission to use the images any way they wish. This is up to the copyright holder of an image to decide. Since we do not own the rights to every photo in ESVA, this will need to be considered on a case-by-case basis. If you aren’t sure about permissions, we are always here to help! Email us at [email protected] with questions.

I have purchased photos in the past and have an ESVA account. Will I lose access to my purchased photo copies? 

Yes and no. You will lose access to your current account with ESVA, so you will no longer be able to find the file(s) you purchased there - but you will be able to quickly and easily obtain another copy for free on our new and improved site.  

If you wish to retain records of past purchases, please access your account now. You can access your account and past purchases here.  

Once the migration is complete, you can email us if you have questions about your past purchases.

What if I need photos now and can’t wait until the migration is complete— do I still have to pay for them? 

No! Please email us at [email protected] and we can provide you with a free copy while the migration is underway.  

However, if your need for photos can wait, we ask that you hold off on requesting images at this time, to avoid overwhelming our reference staff. If too many photo requests come in, we will handle them in the order which they arrive and there may be a longer response time, so please be patient with us. 

As we continue working on the migration, we will do our best to keep you updated and informed! If you have additional questions, please email us at [email protected]. We are happy to help!

William A. Fowler waves from a train, 1983.

Fowler William Alfred B20

Credit line: AIP Emilio Segrè Visual Archives

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