The Oxford Text Archive (OTA) is getting a new lease of life. It is moving to the Bodleian Library, in a transition which should guarantee its long-term sustainability, and open up many new opportunities.
The OTA has had a home in Oxford University Computing Services, now named IT Services, since it was founded by Susan Hockey and Lou Burnard in 1976. You can read a little more on the history in the OTA at 40 post. The OTA archives, preserves and makes available digital texts and related resources, and is involved in a number of collaborations with other repositories, researchers around the world, and the CLARIN European Research Infrastructure. In recent times it has become increasing clear that these activities are nowadays a better fit for the mission and strategic plan of the university library, and so, the decision has been taken to move the OTA into a new partnership with the Bodleian Library, starting from the 1st November 2016.
The OTA will continue to offer the same services that it offers now, mainly texts for download for free for academic, educational and research use, from the website at http://ota.ox.ac.uk/, and will remain committed to the long-term preservation of digital literary and linguistic resources, and making them available for re-use. The OTA will work closely with Electronic Enlightenment – letters and lives online to help people find connections between primary texts and online information about people and social networks. With the backing of the extensive research data management facilities and services of the library, the OTA will be closer to the centre of exciting ongoing developments in digital preservation, data access, resource creation, and digital publishing in the University of Oxford.
In the short term, as far as users are concerned, there should be no visible differences in the service, apart maybe from some subtle changes to the branding. But in the longer term, watch out for lots of improvements and more links with digital collections in the library and beyond!