From Wiki

Growth of the Catalog depends on the volunteer efforts of trained book conservators like you. It is not difficult, to contribute but it does take time to acquaint yourself with the Wiki software and the standards of the community.

Getting Started

Your first step is to request "creator" status through User:RPArenstein. This will let you edit pages, upload pictures and files, make a user page, and all the other functionalities. User:RPArenstein will check to make sure you are a conservator or preservation professional and will have you sit in on a brief Wiki Training which will help orient you with AIC's Wiki plans, Specialty Group efforts, Wiki etiquette, and with editing generally.

Formatting for Wiki's can be a little tricky. We've created some Wiki Templates that can get you started, and we recommended that you arrange to take a workshop session over the phone with some of our tech-savvy volunteers like User:Ev-knight and User:LBedford. More details about these workshops and other Catalog efforts will likely follow the AIC Annual 2011.

Once you're comfortable editing and creating content on your own, we ask that you follow the rules that developed on Wikipedia and AIC User Guidelines... ...generally, they are to "Be Bold" in making well-founded changes while mainting civility.

Community Guidelines

The following guidlines are heavily based on Wikipedia's List of Guidelines.


Behavioral Guidelines outline ways for editors to act and interact. They offer a standard which the community can look towards when there are conflicts of interest, edit wars, "newbies" who aren't aware of the community standards, and disputes.

  • Assume Good Faith: Unless there is strong evidence to the contrary, assume that people who work on the project are trying to help it, not hurt it.
  • Conflict of interest: You are welcome to discuss yourself, your website, and your organization on your user page. However, you are not welcome to promote yourself, your website, or your organization on article pages -- these pages are reference material, not marketing copy.
  • Disruptive editing: Participants with a pattern of edits that has the effect of disrupting progress toward improving an article or the fundamental project of building an encyclopedia may be blocked or banned indefinitely.
  • Do not disrupt the Catalog to illustrate a point: State your point. However, do not spam, disingenuously nominate articles for deletion, push rules to their limits, or otherwise create work for other people just to prove your point.
  • Etiquette: Contributors have different views, perspectives, and backgrounds which sometimes vary widely. Treating others with respect is key to collaborating effectively in building an encyclopedia.
  • Please do not bite the newcomers: Many new contributors lack knowledge about our policies. Nevertheless, always understand that new contributors are future experts and are therefore our most valuable resource.
  • Signatures: Sign all of your posts on Discussion pages by typing --~~~~ to be accountable and to help others understand the conversation. Do not include your signature in articles.
  • Talk page guidelines: Talk pages are for polite discussion serving to improve the encyclopedia, and should not be used to express personal opinions on a subject.


Content guidelines offer advice on identifying and discussing information here on the Catalog, as well as provide pointers for naming pages, organizing categories, general editing, and inserting images.

  • Be Bold in Creating and Editing articles
  • Organize Without Over-organizing
  • Keep the Content Professional and the Tone Civil
  • Format from Templates, Keep Styles Simple
  • Use Naming Conventions

Possible Content Topics

To inspire future content providers (that's you, everybody), here's a very rough list of possible additional topics by section drawn from earlier BCC outlines. Feel free to add or consolidate topics, to work within the existing outline structure or to modify it as it best makes sense to you. The goal of the Catalog is that it evolves organically, in direct response to the user community's interaction.

Section 2 - Examination and Documentation

  • Description and Condition Reports
  • Treatment Proposals
  • Treatment Reports
  • Photo-documentation

Section 3 - Structural Elements of the Book

  • Edge Treatments
  • Spine - style, shaping, and lining
  • Covering
  • Furniture - clasps, bosses, chains, etc.

Section 4 - Book Materials

  • Cloth
  • Paper
  • Thread
  • Board material

Section 5 - Conservation Treatment

  • Board and cover repairs
  • Leather stabilization
  • Board (core) repairs
  • Sewing structure repair
  • Text/paper treatment
    • Dry Cleaning
    • Sizing
    • Stain removal
    • Humidification
    • Mending
    • Guarding
    • Foldouts and inserts
    • Leaf attachments
    • Media issues
    • Leaf casting, pulp fills
    • Parchment repairs

Section 6 - Preservation

  • Selection for conservation
  • Assessments and surveys
  • Preservation reformatting
  • Enclosures
  • Exhibition, supports, transport
  • Imaging and digitization
  • Emergency recovery
  • Environmental control and storage
  • Handling and User Education
  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

Section 7 - Treatment of Circulating Collections

  • Perfect bindings
  • Double Fan Adhesive bindings
  • Batch Treatments
  • Working with a Commercial Binder

Back to Book Conservation Catalog Page