Another DAM Podcast

Audio about Digital Asset Management

Another DAM Podcast interview with Leala Abbott on Digital Asset Management

Leala Abbott discusses Digital Asset Management

Here are the questions asked:

  • How are you involved with Digital Asset Management?
  • Do you do documentation and process?
  • Do you like particular standards?
  • You write a blog which recently you have written some posts which have been quite popular. Tell us more about this.
  • Is it fair to say that Digital Asset Management is not a temporary task?
  • Where can we find your blog?
  • What advice would you like to share with DAM Professionals and people aspiring to become DAM Professionals?

Henrik de Gyor: [0:01] This is Another DAM Podca st about Digital Asset
Management. I’m Henrik de Gyor. Today, I’m here with Leala Abbott. Leala,
how are you?
Leala Abbott: [0:09] Hello. How are you?
Henrik: [0:11] Good. How are you involved with Digital Asset Management, Leala?
Leala: [0:15] I am the Senior Digital Content Analyst for the Metropolitan
Museum of Art. In other circles, it’s known as Digital Asset Manager. It’s basically
the same role. It just has more of an information science bent because I
love metadata. I like working with metadata schemas and information architecture
and the documentation of standards, along with usability for Digital Asset
Management systems or other information retrieval systems. I do branch out
from time to time and strategy for Digital Asset Management, big picture stuff.
Educate people on what Digital Asset Management is, as a practice, and to understand
that it’s not just an application. That’s really my educational charge.
Henrik: [1:07] Do you do documentation and process as well?
Leala: [1:11] Yeah, I do. Because of my information science bent, I’m really into
metadata schemas and the cataloging of the assets and what taxonomies that
we leverage. I like to write that stuff all up so other people can read it. Imagine
that. Somebody can just pick up that document, and pick up right where they
left off. I like to provide guidance for people that are the future Digital Asset
Managers in that particular organization or institution, guides for the catalogers.
I’ve written many librarians’ manuals.
Henrik: [1:46] Do you like particular standards?
Leala: [1:48] I do. I’m a big fan of Dublin Core. I don’t know how you
couldn’t be.
Henrik: [laughs] [1:54] True.
Leala: [1:57] Because it really is very much in line with my pragmatic approach
to Digital Asset Management.
Henrik: [2:02] Excellent. Leala, you write a blog in which recently you’ve written
some posts about DAM, which have been quite popular. Tell me a little more
about that.
Leala: [2:11] I’m excited about that. I’m glad they’re popular. My last two postings
have been, “What kinda ‘Who’ do you need to make DAM work?” I go
into descriptions of the types of roles that are necessary to do Digital Asset
Management properly. I think a lot of times, people think, “We’re just going to
buy this wonderful application, and it’s going to fix the fact that we’re drowning
in all of this digital information.” [2:38] There’s very little understanding out there
that it’s not just an application, it’s a process. It’s a business need, and there is
technology to help with that business need, but you also have to have the right
staffing. I think because it’s very cross disciplinary in the practice of DAM, it
brings together professions that weren’t normally at the same table before.
[3:00] Business analysts and creatives, production managers, librarians and information
science people in rights and usage experts. You have your programmers
and developers, and all these people do have to actually work closely together.
[3:16] I think that that’s something very new. There are a lot of professional stylers
out there, so I think that breaking those down and having to come together
on a project was a really new thing for a lot of organizations.
Henrik: [3:29] That sounds like there is a lot of collaboration involved. Is it fair to
say that Digital Asset Management is not a temporary task?
Leala: [3:34] I believe that it is not a temporary task. I think that it takes, depending
on the size of the organization, one to two years in terms of having
the experts that you need onboard. Consultants, integrators, to get the project
rolling, and the process rolling. [3:52] Again, depending on the size and what
you are really ingesting. Once you have most of the process nailed out, you can
have other staffing involved, and take over where the experts left off.
Henrik: [4:03] As long as you have accountability and governance, is that
fair to say?
Leala: [4:07] Yep. As long as you have your standards that can be used as a
guide, and as long as you continue to revisit your processes. I think it’s really
important that your staff have a professional development chart. That should
be part of their role. [4:24] To make sure that they’re continually educating themselves
on the process and the DAM landscape. That way they stay current.
Henrik: [4:31] Leala, where can we find your blog?
Leala: [4:33] It’s actually my name, I’ve tried to keep it simple. That’s my approach,
and it’s That’s L-E-A-L-A-A-B-B-O-T-T dot com.
Henrik: [4:46] Excellent. What advice would you have to share with other DAM
professional, or even people aspiring to become DAM professionals?
Leala: [4:54] Particularly when I look at resumes, I like to see that people that
worked in different types of organizations. From big ones to small ones, to
cultural heritage organizations to for-profit organizations. [5:09] I find people
that have more multidimensional experiences bring a lot more new ideas,
fresh ideas, innovative and more creative solutions to problems than someone
who’s just been in the same place or organization or field of work the length of
their career.
Henrik: [5:33] Makes sense. Thank you, Leala.
Leala: [5:35] Yeah.
Henrik: [5:37] For more on Digital Asset Management, you can log onto Thanks again.

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Author: Henrik de Gyor

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