Pandora selection guidelines

Download Pandora selection guidelines (PDF 118.0 KB) 

Queensland content is the pre-eminent factor determining selection

Queensland content

A significant proportion of a work should:

  • be about Queensland; or
  • be on a subject of social, political, cultural, artistic, religious, scientific or economic significance and relevance to Queensland

Queensland authorship or editorship alone is insufficient grounds for preservation.

Authority and research value

High priority is given to authoritative publications with long term research value.  Selected publications of lasting significance and generally not available in any other format will be selected for preservation

Online publications that are not considered to be authoritative or do not have reasonable research value will not be selected comprehensively.  However, representative examples of online publications covering a wide range of subjects documenting Queensland society as represented on the Internet will be archived.

Factors contributing to the selection of new online publications or websites for archiving include:

  • intellectual content
  • historic value
  • rareness or uniqueness
  • cultural or associational value for Queensland
  • importance for the understanding of Queensland and Queenslanders
  • wide-ranging coverage of Queensland
  • useful and accurate content
  • information on Queensland subjects or groups that are otherwise poorly documented
  • potential for enduring value in digital form
  • demonstrate new and innovative uses of the internet

Social and Topical Issues 

More inclusive selection guidelines may be applied to online publications and social media content documenting key issues of Queensland social or political interest or during event collecting.
Sites selected for Queensland events or on topics of current interest and/or significance to Queensland will be gathered together in a collective entry (eg. disasters, elections, sports)

Queensland Government publications

In accordance with PANDORA collaborative arrangements, State Library accepts primary responsibility for the selective capture of state government publications that fall within Queensland’s jurisdiction and are only available online. However, due to the large amount of online government publishing, it is not possible to identify select, gain permission and archive all available titles.

Queensland local government publications which contain information of lasting significance and are only available online will also be selected.

Annual reports

Annual reports from Queensland based companies or organisations may be selected if they are substantial and they do not have a print equivalent.

Exhibitions / Festivals / Conferences

Exhibitions, festivals and conferences held by Queensland organisations and on topics of importance to Queensland's history or culture will be selected if there is no print equivalent or if the online exhibition/festival/conference demonstrates significant features not available in the print publication.

Ethnic Communities

Sites of Queensland ethnic communities will be selected when they provide information about the experiences, activities and concerns of those communities in Queensland.

Children and Youth

Sites created for or by young people will be selected when they demonstrate the use of the Internet by or for young people and which represent their concerns, attitudes, lifestyle and culture.

Organisational  websites

Organisational websites are selected on a limited basis.  Those that provide only summary information available in an annual report will not be selected.  Those that provide substantial information about functions, projects, research, etc. may be selected if they are at a size suitable for the current method of harvest

Personal websites

Personal websites will usually only be selected if:

  • they provide information of significant research value about Queensland which is not available elsewhere
  • they are original and are of exceptional quality or of particular interest
  • they reflect Queensland regional, cultural and/or social diversity


Newspapers only available online will be assessed against the general selection guidelines and may be preserved if they meet the guidelines and are of a size and complexity suitable for the current method of harvest and there are sufficient resources to process titles. The newspaper would also need to own the copyright for all of the material in the publication.  Promotional  websites and websites that provide selected features and stories drawn from print or other electronic publications are not generally selected. Snapshots of certain examples may be taken to illustrate promotional uses of the Internet.

Sensitive materials

Sensitive or legally questionable material deemed to have political or cultural significance for Queensland may be selected. Access may be restricted to designated researchers and/or may become available at an agreed upon future date.

Versions and editions

We will not attempt to preserve all versions/editions of a selected online title.  As part of the archiving process a technical analysis of each title is conducted, and a decision made on the frequency of capture desirable. The publication pattern, the importance of the information and the stability of the site will be factors affecting this decision. Some titles will be captured as comprehensively as possible, while others may have a 'snapshot' taken of them, perhaps just once or on a recurring basis.

Defining title parameters of a website

If a publication has a number of internal or external links, the boundaries of the publication need to be decided. Both higher and lower links on the site will be explored to establish which components form a title that stands on its own for the purposes of preservation and cataloguing. Preference is given to breaking down large websites into component titles and selecting those that meet the guidelines. However, sometimes the components of large publications or websites do not stand well on their own but together do form a valuable source of information. In this case, if it fits the guidelines, the site will be selected for archiving as an entity.

Site:  a collection of linked pages and/or documents, mostly with the same basic Internet address (although there are often links to documents on other external websites.)
Title:  the entity that is being considered or selected for collecting. It may be a single document or a number of linked documents with the same basic Internet address.

Materials not generally collected

  • Databases generally are not selected due to the inability of the PANDORA software to capture databases.
  • Newsgroups and discussion lists are problematic due to complex copyright issues
  • Websites which only serve the purpose of organising Internet information (directories, indexes)
  • Organisational records
  • Theses
  • Games
  • Items not publicly available (eg material on intranets)
  • Drafts or works in progress
  • Sites too technically complex to be captured (although technical assistance may be negotiated with NLA for complex websites deemed to be of particular significance)
  • Online publications which provide a superficial view of information which is readily available elsewhere either electronically or in print
  • Websites who have refused to grant permission to archive in PANDORA such as Facebook

Material generally collected by other PANDORA Partners

Literary works

The National Library has the main responsibility for preserving Australian literary texts.

Australian military history

Australian War Memorial has the main responsibility for archiving websites relating to Australian military history.

Australian Indigenous studies

The AIATSIS Library has the main responsibility for archiving websites relating to Australian Indigenous studies.

Australian visual arts

The National Gallery of Australia, Research Library has the main responsibility for archiving websites relating to Australian visual arts

This guideline is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Australia licence. You are free to copy, communicate and adapt this work, so long as you attribute the State Library of Queensland.
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