Archive Guide Key Concepts

All | A C F G I M O P R S U W
There are currently 4 names in this directory beginning with the letter C.

Creating and organizing descriptive information in a structured way so that resources can be found, used, and understood. Cataloging expands on basic metadata, and enables users to access content in multiple ways.

Chain of Custody

Chronological documentation that shows who has held or controlled a video file from the moment it was created. The ability to show an unbroken chain of custody is one important indicator of the authenticity of a video, and therefore a factor in using video as evidence.


The quality of having all of the information a record contained when it was created, and that its original context is maintained. Incomplete records are not as reliable as complete ones, since one might not know what information is missing and why. Transcoding a video to another format can reduce the image quality and discard metadata, making the video less complete and therefore less reliable. Keeping original video files, documenting context, and organizing videos in a way that maintains the original order of video files contributes to the completeness of the video records.

Controlled Vocabulary

A predefined list of terms used to ensure consistency in cataloging. Since there is usually more than one way to describe or refer to a concept, choosing one term eliminates guesswork and circumvents the normal ambiguities of language (and spelling). Imagine searching for “Doctors” only to later learn that some records use the term “Physicians”. Consistent vocabularies increase the findability of records.

The Archiving Workflow

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