Metadata Review

This is a review of the metadata for an item in the New York Public Library’s digital collections:

What features of the item does the metadata describe?

  • Its title: Radio Corporation of America (RCA) – Bud Abbott (in costume as Father Time), Lou Costello (in costume as baby), and Grover Whalen with Bulova Talking Clock
  • Names: New York World’s Fair (1939-1940 : New York, N.Y.) (Creator)
  • Its location:  NY World’s Fair Collection, 1939-40
  • Dates/Origin: When it was created (within a decade; i.e. 1935-1945)
  • Library Locations: Archives and Manuscript Division, along with physical shelf locator
  • Topics: Three overall broad topics: Exhibits; NY World’s Fair; Radio Corporation of America
  • Type of resource: Still image
  • Languages: English
  • Identifiers: NYPL catalog number; MSS unit ID; Universal Unique ID (UUID)
  • Rights statement: Copyright undetermined
  • Item Timeline of Events: When created (approx.), when digitized, when “found by you”

What features does it not describe?

  • Birth/death dates of people portrayed in the image
  • Biographical identifiers for the people in the image (although some information is provided on the scan of the reverse of the image)
  • Name (Creator) attributes the image to the World’s Fair but no to its photographer or source

What questions does the metadata allow you to ask?

  • You can search by:
    • Name of individuals in the image
    • Physical items in the image (A search by “clock radio” produced this image; although not a “direct hit,” it was of interest in the history of “talking radios”)
    • Type of media
    • When image was created (broadly within a decade)
    • Location
    • Three types of catalog numbers (NYPL; NYPL’s MS #; UUID)
    • Rights
    • Topics (although somewhat limited; search by “film comedians” did not produce this image)

What questions does it not allow you to ask?

  • Searching was limited to 3 broad topics.


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