Museum Trends: Open Access to Online Collections

Image sourced from Trip Advisor at:

On February 7th, New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art released 375,000 images of objects from its collection online in an initiative called Open Access. The photographs are now considered to be in the public domain and can be used for commercial or non-commercial use. The Met has a collection of around 2 million works that span 5,000 years, and many were excluded from Open Access because of copyright restrictions. While Open Access greatly increases the accessibility of the art, it may also lead to fewer visitors in the museum. It will be interesting to see if other large museums follow suit in the future.

For more information about the Met’s Open Access, please visit:

Amy Shirer ’18


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