The purpose of this document

Through this document, the Technical Committee of the International Association of Sound and Audiovisual Archives seeks to inform the evolving challenge of safeguarding
audiovisual heritage by offering these general principles and strategies for preservation. This advice identifies the tasks before us as archives, the nature of the objects for which
we are responsible, the potential pitfalls and problem areas of preservation, and it guides the reader to focus on what is most important for their content, to enhance its survival in an unknowable future.

Our intent is to inform both those with financial responsibilities as well as those concerned with the more technical aspects of preservation, and so we hope that IASA-TC 03 will empower both to discover appropriate solutions that encompass those perspectives. More specific methods and technical details of audio preservation are well addressed in the publication IASA-TC 04: Guidelines on the Production and Preservation of
Digital Audio Objects
. For video preservation, the forthcoming IASA-TC 06: Guidelines for the Preservation of Video Recordings will serve the same purpose.

The future of preserving digital material for the long term will be one of managing a pathway between the choices we make now and those choices we must make in the future. We must act decisively now even though we know that technological developments will not necessarily align with those choices. Though no choice is a final one, a well informed decision will consider the process for navigating to the new.

Major changes in the current revision include a widening of scope to include moving image content, and a greater acknowledgement of the prevalence of file-based digital material alongside its carrier-based equivalent. While there are some significant changes to the language used in this version, the principles underlying the document are essentially unchanged.