Fairfax says image archive digitisation is back on track after legal battle for return of pictures

Fairfax_Media_logo1-234x145Fairfax Media says that digitisation of its Sydney Morning Herald photo archive is to resume after a move to carry out the work in the US backfired when the company hired to do the work went into receivership.

According to a statement from Fairfax, a deal has been done with the receiver for the digitisation work to be completed. If it is not, the photos will be returned, Fairfax says.

Earlier this year Fairfax filed a lawsuit in Little Rock, Arkansas, in an attempt to recover millions of images, dating back as far as the 19th Century, from Rogers Photo Archive, the US company which it tasked with digitising its archive two years ago.

Today’s announcement covers both the SMH archives and Fairfax’s NZ publications. The Age’s negatives archive has already been returned.

In the statement, SMH editor-in-chief Darren Goodsir said: “We are pleased to be able to resume this important work. The digitisation work is already well progressed, and once the tagging process is completed, our valuable archive of images will become searchable and accessible – and most importantly, preserved for the future.”

Fairfax said it was pursuing “recovery options” over hard copy images which were reportedly sold on eBay after being digitised.


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