Recommendations of the Ethical Issues to Accommodate when Digitalizing the Big Data in the Field of Arts & Humanities

Neelam F. Pirbhai, Cathryn Peoples

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The fields of information science and digital humanities are closely linked, with the overlapping of common research themes noted in many research papers. National libraries and archives have been mass collecting and digitizing cultural and scholarly productions for a long time. However, with the data accessibility offered by web and search engines, questions surrounding ethical issues and transparency behind the actual practices of big data/mass digitization, such as collecting and using data, arise. It is important to find out whether, under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as one example, human rights are being respected. Since digital libraries, as a field of research, are focusing on certain fundamental concerns in the growing cyberculture, this qualitative research through a literature review analyzes the ethical implications of big data and digitalization. In fact, even though mass digitalization is beneficial, there is a need for more control on how data is stored and disseminated. This study will therefore focus on the insights and suggestions of existing authors to understand the different loopholes that must be consideration when embarking in a digitalization project. Google LLC is used as a case study to contextualize the ethical issues. The study revealed that the process of digitalization is complex as there are many unknowns and ethical standards. Furthermore, security issues are not often a priority during the digitalization process. Recommendations of further procedures around the digitalization process will therefore create a more human-centered, ethical, computing environment
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the International Conference on Electrical, Computer, Communications and Mechatronics Engineering (ICECCME)
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-6654-7095-7
ISBN (Print)978-1-6654-7096-4
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 30 Dec 2022


  • digital huymanities
  • ethics
  • digitization/digitalization
  • digital curation
  • digital transformation
  • virtual/digital libraries
  • qualitative research
  • mechatronics
  • production
  • big data
  • search engines
  • libraries
  • internet


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