• Media Preservation Assistant

    Location US-NY-Manhattan
    Job ID
    # of Openings Remaining
    Full-Time Regular
    PAMI Preservation of Audio & Moving Image
  • Overview

    Located within the New York Public Library Special Collections division, the audio and moving image (AMI) preservation program safeguards the Library’s audio, video, and motion picture film collections through physical treatment and reformatting.

    In response to a recent Mellon Foundation-funded assessment, the Library has begun an ambitious plan to digitize and preserve its critically at-risk media holdings over the next decade. Through a combination of enhanced in-house and outsourced digitization, the Library will preserve, and provide robust access to its remarkable collections. See nypl.org/preservation for more information about the program.

    Principal Responsibilities

    The Media Preservation Assistant is responsible for performing quality control to ensure that in-house and vendor preservation reformatting labs have met the required specifications for digitization of the Library’s audio and moving image collections. The position will ensure timely preparation and packaging of the digital assets for the digital repository queues and will create access derivatives and media as needed. The position will also assist in evaluation and implementation of specifications and workflow processes


    The position will perform enhanced film inventory activities, which include bibliographic updates, format and characteristic identification (base material, gauge, length, sound and color systems, generation, etc.), and condition assessment. Activities also include light cleaning, repair and rehousing. Assessment activities will expand to other media types, such as audio discs and cylinders.


    The position will assist the audio and moving image lab staff and related stakeholders in project coordination and logistics activities across multiple NYPL and vendor locations.


    Travel to all NYPL Research Library sites is required, as is participation in disaster response and recovery activities. Primary activities will be performed at the NYPL audio and moving image preservation sites at the Library for Performing Arts in Manhattan and the Library Services Center in Long Island City.



    • Performs inventory, bibliographic updates, condition assessments, and light cleaning and repair of audio and moving image media, with a focus on film research collections.
    • Performs quality control on vendor and in-house work, including file fixity, specification conformance, and metadata completeness. Operates complex automated QC analysis tools, evaluates QC reports, and performs manual QC through critical viewing/listening of files.
    • Prepares and packages media files and metadata for digital repository ingest. Performs transcoding of media for access as needed.
    • Assists with project coordination and logistics, including inventory, packing, shipping, and receiving of original media and storage media.
    • Additional responsibilities include:
    • Assists in preparation of statistics and project reports;
    • Documents workflow and specifications;
    • Participates in general preservation program activities as time permits;
    • Participates in the Library’s disaster preparedness and recovery programs; and
    • Performs other duties as assigned.




    NYPL Core Values

    • Helpful
    • Resourceful
    • Curious

    Minimum Qualifications

    • Bachelor’s degree in media- or technology-related discipline, with experience working in a digitization facility or on library/archive preservation projects.
    • Experience with preservation reformatting technologies and media quality control workflows.
    • Critical viewing and listening skills. Familiarity with audio and video metering and analysis.
    • Experience with and knowledge of digital media file formats.
    • Experience with and basic knowledge of historic and current audio and moving image media formats, including format identification and the visual/sonic characteristics and capabilities of legacy media.
    • Basic knowledge of media preservation workflows.
    • Experience with Apple and Windows operating systems and experience using word processing, spreadsheet, and database software.

    Preferred Qualifications

    • Master’s degree with preferred specialization in audio and moving media preservation, information science, or related discipline plus experience in preservation reformatting technologies and media quality control workflows.
    • Basic knowledge of media-related metadata standards and knowledge of JSON, XML and/or other types of structured data.
    • Experience handling historic and current audio and moving image media formats (physical media).
    • Experience identifying media formats, performing condition assessments, and performing light repair and cleaning of historic and current formats, especially film and audio discs.
    • Experience with  automated or manual audio and moving image file-based quality control software; and checksum creation and validation.
    • Experience with MediaInfo or other file analysis tools; BagIt format; and command-line scripting.
    • Experienced in the use of transcoding software packages.
    • Experience with professional audio and moving image media editing software, such as ProTools, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, Adobe Audition, etc.

    Work Environment

    Work performed in preservation labs, staff offices, and collection storage areas. 

    Physical Duties

    Position involves some lifting and exposure to dust and mold. Must be able to lift up to 40 pounds.


    Union / Non Union

    Non Union


    Sorry the Share function is not working properly at this moment. Please refresh the page and try again later.
    Share on your newsfeed