June 29, 2016 at 6:13 pm EDT | by Staff reports
Blade, D.C. Public Library announce partnership
DC Public Library, gay news, Washington Blade

Blade publisher Lynne Brown announced plans to fully digitize the paper’s 47-year archive via partnership with the DC Public Library. (Washington Blade photo by Chris Jennings)

The Washington Blade and the DC Public Library have entered into a partnership to make the newspaper’s story and photo archive available to the public.

The Library will digitize, store and make the newspaper’s full archive available on Dig DC, the online portal maintained by the DC Public Library’s Special Collections department. Readers will be able to search and retrieve Washington Blade stories and photos for free. Commercial use of archived material will be subject to fees. The Blade will retain ownership of its content.

“The Blade was covering the local and national LGBT community long before the mainstream media,” said Washington Blade publisher Lynne Brown. “Many of our stories were never told elsewhere and we’re excited that our partnership with the DC Public Library will make this material readily accessible again.”

Published by Brown Naff Pitts Omnimedia, The Washington Blade was founded in 1969 and is known as the newspaper of record for the LGBT community locally and nationally.

The first decades worth of material will be ready for public access in 2017. The full process is expected to be completed in 2019. The Library will manage and migrate the files to newer formats so that the public will be able to use them.

The Blade chose DCPL after a long search for the right partner in this project.

“Many institutions were interested in hosting the Blade’s content but after careful review, we realized the DCPL’s local roots along with its commitment to excellence and its experience with the technology involved made it the ideal partner,” said Brown. “We’re excited to get started.”

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