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The Social Networks Pilot: Creative Re-use of Dutch and British Sound Archives

Title (author1): 
First names (author1): 
Surname (author 1): 
The Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
Other authors: 
Johan Oomen
Presentation type: 
spoken paper
9 October Thursday
Start time: 
CFB Auditorium

In recent years there has been a significant increase in both National and EU funded projects with the aim to stimulate collaboration between creative industries and GLAMs (Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums). The re-use of open data seems to be a hot topic, which is also reflected in the Digital Agenda for Europe. Making the collections held by Europe's libraries, archives, museums and audio-visual archives available online is seen to a ‘win-win for culture, economic growth and individual fulfilment’ [1]. Europeana ( is the single access point to Europe’s cultural heritage online, with over 30 million digitised items available. Europeana published its metadata under an open licence (CC0) back in September 2012. This was a huge step towards the re-use of cultural heritage data, which resulted in many new and interesting ways of disclosing collections. Creative re-use of digital heritage objects is the next big step in the open data movement.
We will present at IASA 2014 the ‘Social Networks Pilot’, which is developed as part of the Europeana Creative project ( The project aims to stimulate greater re-use of cultural heritage resources by creative industries. A number of pilots applications are developed develop in the areas of design, tourism, education and social networks, to inspire creative industries to build on top or create new ones.

The Social Networks Pilot
The objective of the Social Networks Pilot is to attract suppliers of websites with social elements to embed Europeana content in their services. This Pilot will make use of a varied array of audio content. These sound assets are supplied by the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision (NISV), who is leading the pilot development, and the British Library (BL). Both organisations have experience with crowdsourcing projects such as the Sound of the Netherlands and UK Soundmap [2], which encouraged the public to contribute their own sounds. This pilot will however not focus on adding new sounds, but rather on contextualising existing sounds with other resources.

Pilot partner We Are What We Do, known for their social media platform Historypin (HP), has developed the user interface. It allows exploration, listening to and enrichment of all NISV and BL audio assets. From an analysis of the existing sounds in both sound archives, 3 topics were selected for the pilot: Birds, Aviation and Cityscapes (see Figure 1). The sounds that are used in the pilot include a date and a geo-location, so that exploration through space and time is possible.
Specific communities of interest, such as bird lovers or airplane spotters, are invited to interact with the audio content by, for example, creating links between these audio assets and other assets from within Europeana, Historypin, Wikipedia or more widely across the Internet