Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Correction to FFHS comments on TNA changes

From the Federation of Family History Societies:

Correction to earlier comment on TNA changes

Following my recent comments about the user group meeting at which TNA announced its plans for change, I have learnt that Nick Barratt and others behind Action 4 Archives were dismayed at the statement “...some of the critics seemed to be guilty of the sort of misrepresentation they claimed had been used by TNA. Either that or they are unable to interpret documents as well as might be expected.”

They are concerned that “it suggests that the research and interpretation exercise that a wide variety of experienced historians, both present at the meeting and absent for various reasons, was not thorough and was intentionally misleading.” I therefore wish to clarify that I did not intend this to apply to all of the arguments put forward against the proposals, and indeed thought that the points made by Nick Barratt on behalf of Action 4 Archives were well made. I am sorry for any offence caused.

In their presentation at the meeting, TNA had a section entitled ‘Myths and the facts’. Nick has produced a rebuttal of this and no doubt he will be adding this to the Action 4 Archives website which is located at
http://action4archives.com. I will announce when this is available.

Roger Lewry
FFHS Archives Liaison

UPDATE: Nick Barratt's Action 4 Archives has now posted a response to the TNA changes at http://action4archives.com/update-29-sept-2009, which criticises the family history community as much as TNA itself, stating that there is no 'clear protesting voice from a family history representative body'.

Action 4 Archives has also posted the following mission statement: "We are looking to reposition our campaign and move Action 4 Archives onto a more formal footing. We are actively looking for professional archivists, academic historians, and family historians to help shape strategy, not just for TNA but across the entire sector – as well as an accountant and lawyer to provide professional assistance. At this stage contributions would be voluntary and conducted via email, with no minimum time commitment. Please email us if you would like to become involved." Contact details at the site.


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