Barbara Fister has an interesting article in Library Journal in which she paints a happier-than-usual picture of what university administrators think of libraries and librarians. That's great, but what jumped out at me was down towards the bottom of the article where Daniel Greenstein, vice provost for academic planning and programs
at the University of California (UC) system, is quoted,
"Special collections will be very important," he states. These may be unique archival materials, rare historical items, or web archives, such as a special collection that captured the first draft of history on the Katrina disaster as it was being published in digital form (hurricanearchive.org). Libraries can turn their preservation and collection efforts toward conserving such ephemeral material that would otherwise be lost."
That jumped out because a few weeks ago the California Digital Library opened up their Web Archiving Service beyond the U of California system, which gives us all what appears to be a great tool to start collecting web archives. It's not exactly cheap, but I'm not aware of anything other than the Internet Archive that does anything similar to this (are you?).
From the site:
What if you could easily go back and compare your services and publications of five years ago to those same services today? Whether you are a small non-profit organization or a major University, even short-term management of your web content can be challenging, and keeping web content current is often a high priority. Very large, complex organizations may have equally complex web networks consisting of hundreds of related sites. Whether simple or complex, WAS provides tools to archive your web presence on a periodic, scheduled basis to preserve a record of your organization.
Neat stuff - check it out!