Australian Newspaper Plan

Preserving for Permanent Access

Five Year Plan July 2010 - June 2015

Established in the early 1990s, the Australian Newspaper Plan (ANPlan) aims to ensure that newspapers published in Australia are collected and preserved for permanent access.

ANPlan is a cooperative initiative of National and State Libraries Australasia (NSLA). It relies on collaboration between Australia's national, state and territory libraries. The National Library of New Zealand has observer status.

Under ANPlan, primary responsibility for a newspaper rests with the ANPlan library in the state or territory of the newspaper's origin. The National Library of Australia shares responsibility for ACT newspapers with the ACT Heritage Library and has assumed responsibility for a number of newspapers that are national in scope, coverage and distribution.[1]

The Australian partners report to NSLA annually against a set of Key Indicators in the areas of collecting, preserving and providing access to newspapers. ANPlan’s second Five Year Plan (2010-1015) is intended to provide impetus to ANPlan libraries’ endeavours in those areas which are not currently well met. It is also intended to provide focus to current efforts to address certain key ‘at risk’ newspapers and to ANPlan libraries’ outreach activities.

A minor review was undertaken in early 2013 and actions related to digital collecting were added.


ANPlan libraries will continue to enlist the help of community groups and the public in finding missing newspapers. The following goals have been identified for July 2010 – June 2015:

  1. To identify all Australian newspapers which are entirely missing, in any format, from the national collection held within the ANPlan libraries, or for which substantial portions are missing.
  2. To investigate the technical and access issues associated with collecting the following two categories of Australian digital newspapers, for both their full-text content and the “look-and-feel”:
  3. digital newspapers which are not associated with a printed version (see Appendix 2). This action will likely involve a collaboration with web archiving staff in each of the ANPlan libraries;
  4. pre-press digital files used for production of hard copy newspapers;
  5. and keeping a ‘watching brief’ on those categories of Australian digital newspapers and news material which are not currently being addressed through ANPlan.


For some ANPlan libraries, preservation microfilming remains a key strategy for preserving permanent access to Australian newspapers. ANPlan libraries will continue to preserve their newspaper collections through preservation microfilming, re-filming poorly filmed material, copying from acetate microfilm to stable polyester microfilm, computer output microfilming as well as through digitisation.

ANPlan libraries will aim to store all newspapers (hard copy and microform masters) under optimal physical and environmental conditions to preserve ongoing access and take steps to ensure permanent access to those newspapers whose microfilm preservation masters are not currently owned by the ANPlan libraries responsible for these titles (e.g. by ensuring that there are catalogue records for these titles or by negotiating transfer of custody).

The following preservation goals have been identified for July 2010 – June 2015:

  1. To preserve, for permanent access, the significant ‘at risk’ newspapers listed (in the Appendix 4 of this document).
  2. To develop guidelines for the storage of newspapers which outline the impact of environmental conditions on the longevity of newspapers and which include critical factors which influence libraries’ ability to provide permanent access to newspapers.
  3. To develop guidelines and standards for digitising newspapers for preservation purposes and to influence the development and promote the adoption of best practice guidelines in digital preservation to ensure permanent access to digitised and digital newspapers.


To ensure that Australian newspapers are universally accessible, ANPlan libraries will endeavour to catalogue all newspapers (hard copy, all generations of microfilm, digitised and digital) onto the National Bibliographic Database (NBD), including detailed and up-to-date holdings information.

The following goals relating to newspaper access have been identified for July 2010 – June 2015:

  1. To ensure that all generations of newspaper microfilm titles which ANPlan libraries hold responsibility for are catalogued onto the national bibliographic database, according to the microform cataloguing guidelines developed by ANPlan libraries in 2006, with holdings attached to the correct format and generation.
  2. To ensure that all digitised newspapers are catalogued onto the national bibliographic database, according to the Guidelines for Cataloguing Remote Electronic Resources.
  3. To provide and maintain digital access to those titles and corresponding date ranges listed in the Australian Newspapers Digitisation Program, Phase 1.
  4. To contribute all digitised newspaper content to digitised newspapers on Trove as outlined in the National Library’s Contributor Guidelines.


ANPlan libraries will continue to participate, as they are able, to raise awareness in the community of the role of libraries in collecting, preserving and providing access to newspapers.

The following goal relating to outreach has been identified for July 2010 – June 2015:

  1. ANPlan libraries will work through their networks with public libraries to raise awareness of and knowledge about the national infrastructure which exists for collecting, preserving and providing access to Australian newspapers including how to contribute to and use Digitised newspapers on Trove. ANPlan libraries will play a key role in facilitating contributions from local libraries and organisations to the service, as outlined in the Contributor Guidelines, and in raising awareness of funding strategies that may be available for newspaper digitisation projects.

[1] Australian (national edition), Australian Financial ReviewNational Times,Nation Review and Independent Monthly.