Corporate Garb and Garbage

  • strict warning: Only variables should be assigned by reference in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/includes/ : eval()'d code on line 1.
  • strict warning: Only variables should be assigned by reference in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/includes/ : eval()'d code on line 1.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 879.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_argument::init() should be compatible with views_handler::init(&$view, $options) in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/ on line 745.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_validate() should be compatible with views_handler::options_validate($form, &$form_state) in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/ on line 589.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_submit() should be compatible with views_handler::options_submit($form, &$form_state) in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/ on line 589.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter_boolean_operator::value_validate() should be compatible with views_handler_filter::value_validate($form, &$form_state) in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/ on line 149.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_row::options_validate() should be compatible with views_plugin::options_validate(&$form, &$form_state) in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/ on line 135.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_plugin_row::options_submit() should be compatible with views_plugin::options_submit(&$form, &$form_state) in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/views/plugins/ on line 135.
  • strict warning: Only variables should be assigned by reference in /courses/i202/public_html/f12/sites/all/modules/social_media/social_media.module on line 248.

From: "Want to be a Corporate Archivist? It Sure Helps to be a Pack Rat" by Emily Glazer, Wall Street Journal, August 29, 2012

The Wall Street journal touched on a big dilemma for keepers of the past such as historians, librarians, and archivists. What do we need for historical record? An old catalog? A glue stick? A wrapper? Mike Bullington, the senior archivist manager for McDonald's might respond: "Yes, Everything."

The corporate archivist is hired by a company (usually with a deep-seeded  image like McDonald's) to hoard.  For Bullington of McDonald's a day might include opening packages sent by fans of McDonald's, going to old printing warehouses or scouring eBay for anything and everything McDonald's.  An example of a good find? The Onion McNugget box, a precursor to the Chicken McNugget.  When the company puts the mid-70's box on a display at a convention, the response is amazing; nobody even knew the Onion McNugget existed. 

Corporate or any other type of archive is important because it reminds a brand with such a long history what has been done before, what worked, and how to learn from mistakes.  In addition, products that might have been flops years ago can inspire reinventions of old ideas.  Above all, archives provide cultural and factual value; a way for people to see what has and has not been done. 

In Information Management and Systems, it is so easy to forget the foundations of Information Organization and Retrieval.  In the first few lectures of 202, we've spent a lot of time discussing the physicality in organizing and collecting "things".  Jennifer Trant would almost certainly describe the corporate archives as a place to definitively go back in the history of a company (possibly with assistance) and see what Bullington would hope to be everything pertaining to that company.

Corporate archivists are sure to continue to be an in-demand specialty as companies change more quickly and look to the past for product, design and idea development.